Monday, October 03, 2005

Exponential decline

Been helping my daughter with writing equations to describe the growth rates that go with different types of word problems, how rapidly the bacteria are multiplying for example. Is it (10 + n to the 3) or just (n to the 13)?

12 days ago the vet told us he thought we might have 4 months.
4 days ago the veterinary oncologist told us we might have 1 month.
1 day ago I started worrying about when and whether the vet would be available this week when we'd have to put her out of her suffering.

How do you explain that equation to a child who was counting first on 4 months, then heartbroken accepted that it was just 1 month? But explain I guess I must. Some things don't follow a predictable curve.

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