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MathGroup Archive 1993

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Factor working with Real numbers

  • To: mathgroup at
  • Subject: Factor working with Real numbers
  • From: herjan at (Herjan Barnard)
  • Date: Tue, 16 Mar 93 17:33:51 +0100

Hello MathGroup,

I want to factor a polynomial equation with real coefficients
into polynomials with real coefficients. This means that some of the factors
are polynomials of degree 1 and some of degree 2.

Factor[-12 + x - 2 x^2 + x^3]           ----->  (x - 3) (x^2 + x + 4)

However, Factor can handle only integer and rational coefficients. I want to

Factor[1 + 4 x + 10 x^2 + 20 x^3] // N  -----> 

                       (1 + 2.9207 x) (1 + 1.0793 x + 6.84767 x^2)

The only way I know is to use (N)Solve and multiplying the complex conjugate
solutions, which is a rather clumsy method.

Does anyone know a function that performs this type of factorization?

H. J. Barnard.

herjan at

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