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04-cm cylinders. The number of digits of accuracy in a number is referred to as the number of significant figures, or “sig figs” for short. As in the example above, sig figs provide a way of showing the accuracy of a number. In most cases, the result of a calculation involving several pieces of data can be no more accurate than the least accurate piece of data. 04 cm, was really not as accurate as he 32 Chapter 0 Introduction and review thought. In general, your result should not have more than the number of sig figs in the least accurate piece of data you started with.

Therefore, the animals’ surface areas should be proportional to m2/3 . As shown in the right-hand panel of figure o, this relationship appears to hold quite well for the dwarf siren, a type of salamander. 3 Scaling applied to biology 51 o / Geometrical scaling of animals. times more body mass will have only four times more surface area. This behavior of the ratio of surface area to mass (or, equivalently, the ratio of surface area to volume) has important consequences for mammals, which must maintain a constant body temperature.

Then convert the numbers to units of kilograms and recompute their mean. Is the answer consistent? (b) Do the same for the geometric mean. (c) If a and b both have units of grams, what should we call the units of ab? Does your answer make sense when you take the square root? (d) Suppose someone proposes to you a third kind of mean, called the superduper mean, defined as (ab)1/3 . Is this reasonable? Solution, p. 510 9 In an article on the SARS epidemic, the May 7, 2003 New York Times discusses conflicting estimates of the disease’s incubation period (the average time that elapses from infection to the first symptoms).

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