physics with algebra

what is the area, and its approximate uncertainty, of a square of side 3.1x10^4 cm?

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  1. (3.1*10^4)^2 = 9.6*10^8

    3.1^2 ----> 9.6 to two significant figs
    but it might have been
    3.05^2 ----> 9.3
    or maybe
    3.1499999999...^2 ---> 9.9

    so
    9.6 + or - .3 * 10*8

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