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MathGroup Archive 1998

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problem with Coefficient



The Mathematica function Coefficient seemingly does not always work as
it should:

In[1]:=Coefficient[x^2 y^2,x^2 y^2]
Out[1]=1
In[2]:=Coefficient[x1^2 x2^2,x1^2 x2^2] Out[2]=0

The first computation is correct, the second not.  I made this
computation on several computers using Mathematica 3.0 under Windows
95.

What am I missing?  Are x1 and x2 prohibited as variable names? (I hope
not!)

(Actually, Coefficient seems to work most of the time for polynomials in
x1, x2, x3,...  Other monomials which do not work are x1^2 x2 x3^2,
x1^3 x2^2, x2^3 x3^2, x3^3 x4^2, x4^3 x1^2.)

I'd be grateful for some help with this.

Nikolaus Vonessen

PS I'd appreciate replies sent directly to me (vonessen@selway.umt.edu)

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