programming forums Java Mobile Certification Databases Caching Books Engineering Micro Controllers OS Languages Paradigms IDEs Build Tools Frameworks Application Servers Open Source This Site Careers Other Pie Elite all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
Marshals:
• Campbell Ritchie
• Jeanne Boyarsky
• Ron McLeod
• Paul Clapham
• Liutauras Vilda
Sheriffs:
• paul wheaton
• Rob Spoor
• Devaka Cooray
Saloon Keepers:
• Stephan van Hulst
• Tim Holloway
• Carey Brown
• Frits Walraven
• Tim Moores
Bartenders:
• Mikalai Zaikin

# What is meant by infinity sign?

Ranch Hand
Posts: 65
• Number of slices to send:
Optional 'thank-you' note:
Hi,
I'm working through a java textbook and I came across this exercise which has an infinity sign.  I have attached a picture.  Could you tell me what it means please?
javaEx.jpg

Saloon Keeper
Posts: 10737
86
• Number of slices to send:
Optional 'thank-you' note:
I think it's an odd symbol to choose but in those formulas the infinity means multiply.

Marshal
Posts: 79249
377
• Number of slices to send:
Optional 'thank-you' note:

Carey Brown wrote:. . . an odd symbol . . .

It's the wrong symbol. Something has gone wrong with the encoding when that book was typeset

Ranch Hand
Posts: 49
1
• 1
• Number of slices to send:
Optional 'thank-you' note:

Campbell Ritchie wrote:

Carey Brown wrote:. . . an odd symbol . . .

It's the wrong symbol. Something has gone wrong with the encoding when that book was typeset

it's a circle, so it actually just goes around and around ... infinitely

Master Rancher
Posts: 4831
74
• Number of slices to send:
Optional 'thank-you' note:
What book is this, by the way?  Based on the classes they're using, it seems rather old.  I hope the infinity-symbol-for-multiplication problem is just for that problem, not throughout the book.

Ranch Foreman
Posts: 883
8
• Number of slices to send:
Optional 'thank-you' note:
I zoomed in on the character.  It is:

( x )

The parens are close to the x so it looks like infinity.

Kevin

Carey Brown
Saloon Keeper
Posts: 10737
86
• Number of slices to send:
Optional 'thank-you' note:
Sorry, Kevin. Don't think so.

Mike Simmons
Master Rancher
Posts: 4831
74
• 1
• Number of slices to send:
Optional 'thank-you' note:
Plus, there's no reason to use parentheses there.  It would be just as nonsensical as using an infinity symbol.

kevin Abel
Ranch Foreman
Posts: 883
8
• Number of slices to send:
Optional 'thank-you' note:
I go back to the multiply meaning.

Marshal
Posts: 28233
95
• Number of slices to send:
Optional 'thank-you' note:

kevin Abel wrote:I go back to the multiply meaning.

That's definitely what it means. Like somebody said earlier, it's an encoding problem in the book's production. Possibly their source document used the Unicode "multiplication symbol" character which looks like × instead of the character x or (even worse) the * symbol, which would be the professional thing to do in the publishing world. I'm not sure how that would get mangled into the the ∞ character, though, but anyway for sure it was meant to be multiplication.