33anda3rd wrote:
8 / 2(4)
which is also:
8
-----
2(4)
Those two expressions are not the same. In the second, you've assumed an additional set of parenthesis are implicit i.e:
8 / 2(4) = 8 / (2(4))
Try writing the same expression with an explicit multiplication operator instead
8 / 2(4) = 8 / 2 * (4)
and suddenly you don't feel the need to do 2*4 before 8/2. I think without the explicit operator, the multiplication feels like it is closely coupling 2 * 4, so you should do it first, but again, there is no actual rule about that.
In fact, the notation is confusing because it is mixing styles together. If you were writing with pen and paper or a fancy equation editor you'd do either:
Code:
8 8
----- or ----- (4)
2(4) 2
In a basic text editor like for programming you'd write:
8/(2*4) or 8/2*4
In both cases, the interpretation is clear, but mixing these styles together leads to confusion, which is the point of this trick.