# How to do basic mathematical computations (in Python)

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How do we write the most common mathematical operations in a given piece of software? For example, how do we write multiplication, or exponentiation, or logarithms, in Python vs. R vs. Excel, and so on?

## Solution

For those expressions that need the Python math package, use the code import math beforehand to ensure that package is loaded. Alternatively, you can write from math import * and thus drop the math prefixes in the table below.

Mathematical notation Python code Requires math package?
$x+y$ x+y no
$x-y$ x-y no
$xy$ x*y no
$\frac xy$ x/y no
$\left\lfloor\frac xy\right\rfloor$ x//y no
remainder of $x\div y$ x%y no
$x^y$ x**y no
$\vert x\vert$ abs(x) no
$\ln x$ math.log(x) yes
$\log_a b$ math.log(b,a) yes
$e^x$ math.exp(x) yes
$\pi$ math.pi yes
$\sin x$ math.sin(x) yes
$\sin^{-1} x$ math.asin(x) yes
$\sqrt x$ x**0.5 no
$\sqrt x$ math.sqrt(x) yes

Other trigonometric functions are also available besides just math.sin, including math.cos, math.tan, etc.