# Algebra

posted by .

A tortoise is walking in the desert. It walks for 9.6 meters at a speed of
6 meters per minute. For how many minutes does it walk?

9.6/6
1.6

• Algebra -

Right.

• doing units science way -

Yes, but people in science have a particular approach,
Type the units in such a manner that the ones you do not want cancel

we can use 6 meters / 1 minute
or we can use 1 minute / 6 meters
(both are the same top and bottom, just different units. For this problem one minute IS 6 meters :)

we have
9.6 meters
so
multiply by 1 min/6 meters

9.6 meters (1 min/6 meters)
= 1.6 min

• Algebra -

Thank you

• Algebra -

You are welcome.

• Algebra - units -

Damon makes a good point. You know that you can always multiply by 1 without changing anything.

If 6 meters = 1 minute, then

6m/1min = 1
1min/6m = 1

Those "conversion factors" are just different ways of writing 1! If you pick the correct expression, the unwanted units cancel out.

• Algebra -

It is particularly helpful if you have a whole string of them.

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