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Solve results


I recently came upon this and was wondering if it's a Solve bug, some
notation I'm not familiar with, or just an unfortunate happenstance.

When I give Mathematica the equation x^3-8==0, this is what it returns:

In[1]:=
Out[1]=

But if I first factor the polynomial instead:

In[2]:=
Out[2]=

if I use reduce instead of solve

In[3]:=
Out[3]=


My question is: why the different behaviors, and how can I tell in advance
which to use?

+----------------------------+   
|                            |   I understand mine's a risky plan,
|   Greg Anderson            |   and your system can't miss
|   dwarf at wam.umd.edu        |   but is security, after all a cause
|   timbwolf at eng.umd.edu     |   or symptom of happiness.
|                            |   
+----------------------------+   Dream Theater -- A Matter of Time



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