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Re: Typesetting bug

  • To: mathgroup at
  • Subject: [mg96464] Re: [mg96405] Typesetting bug
  • From: "David Park" <djmpark at>
  • Date: Sat, 14 Feb 2009 03:08:43 -0500 (EST)
  • References: <14647374.1234516890066.JavaMail.root@m02>

I would say that it's a bug. Also you shouldn't have to put parentheses
around the first max^n. It's as if Mathematica is using 'max' internally in
such a way to conflict with user expressions. They also use 'comment'
internally and let it leak out.

David Park
djmpark at  

From: replicatorzed at [mailto:replicatorzed at] 

Dear Group,

I don't know whether this "feature" is widely known or not, but it
surely gave me an hour of scratching my head, buried deep inside a

In[7]:= n = .5;
x = 1;

ax = 1;
{(ax^n), x^n, ax^n - x^n}

Out[10]= {1, 1, 0}

In[11]:= max = 1;
{(max^n), x^n, max^n-x^n}

Out[12]= {1, 1, -1}

This inconsistency happens only if exponents are typed in as real
superscripts with Ctrl+^. A FullForm reveals an underlying Times in
the last case, which ultimately is responsible for the wrong answer.
Furthermore, max^n does not work as intended if typed and evaluated in
one call, as follows:
max <Ctrl+^> n <enter> x <Shift+Enter>
because it is interpreted as a product of max^n and x.

Istvan Zachar

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