03_sigdigs - Lesson 3: Significant Digits Scientists take...

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Lesson 3: Significant Digits Scientists take the ideas of precision and accuracy very seriously. You can actually take entire courses in University that show how to figure out the precision and accuracy of measurements. Guess what? I took 'em!. .. your opinion of me has probably slipped a few notches ; ) We need to know that when another scientist reports a finding to us, we can trust the accuracy and precision of all the measurements that have been done. A set of guidelines is needed while we do calculations so that we get rid of all those 4.243956528452940472 ” kind of answers you see on your calculator. The guidelines are there so we will know how many digits we should round off the final answer to show the correct precision. All of this boils down to something called “ Significant Digits ”, more commonly referred to as Sig Digs . To determine how many significant ( important ) digits a number has, follow these rules: 1. The numbers 1 to 9 are always sig digs. Zero ("0") is a sig dig if it comes to the right of a number
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This note was uploaded on 07/24/2009 for the course PHY 092342 taught by Professor Knott during the Spring '09 term at Cosumnes River College.

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03_sigdigs - Lesson 3: Significant Digits Scientists take...

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