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Re: Getting rid of annoying zeroes in algebraic expressions

  • To: mathgroup at
  • Subject: [mg15489] Re: Getting rid of annoying zeroes in algebraic expressions
  • From: "William M. MacDonald" <wmacd at>
  • Date: Mon, 18 Jan 1999 04:22:32 -0500
  • References: <75q1n1$>
  • Sender: owner-wri-mathgroup at

Are you doing algebra with Real numbers or integers and rational
fractions? If you are, don't insert decimal points and you won't have
this problem. --
William M. MacDonald
Professor of Physics
University of Maryland

In article <75q1n1$23s at>, "Ross, Sean" <rosss at>

> Let xx be the result of some algebraic manipulations which, for some
> reason, mathematica thinks the real zeroes ought to be kept and I think
> they ought to be dropped.
> xx=0. + (a*f)/(0. + f) + (b*f)/(0. + f) + (c*f)/(0. + f)
> xx/.Plus[0.,q_]->q
> returns
> 0. + (a*f)/(0. + f) + (b*f)/(0. + f) + (c*f)/(0. + f)
> while
> 0. + (a*f)/(0. + f) + (b*f)/(0. + f) + (c*f)/(0. + f)/.Plus[0.,q_->q]
> returns the expected
> a+b+c.
> xx is supposed to be equivalent to the expression, but in this case, it
> is not.
> I can't write a function to automatically drop zeroes if expressions
> behave differently when they are alone on an input line and when they
> are set equal to a symbol.  Does anyone know how to eliminate this kind
> of behavior?  I am sure it has something to do with some obscure step
> in the "standard evaluation cycle" and that there is probably a long,
> convoluted explanation as to why someone would want this behavior, but
> I don't and I would appreciate it if someone could tell me how to get
> rid of it or circumvent it.
> Thanks,
> Sean Ross
> Please reply to rosss at as I no longer subscribe to the
> mathgroup.

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