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The multiplication sign

The multiplication sign is the symbol × (multiplication sign is the preferred Unicode name for the codepoint represented by that glyph). The symbol is similar to the lowercase letter x but is a more symmetric saltire, and has different uses.

In mathematics, the symbol × (read as times, multiplication sign or into sign) is primarily used to denote the

The × symbol for multiplication was introduced by William Oughtred in 1631.[1] It was chosen for religious reason to represent the cross.[2]

In many non-Anglophone countries, the · (middle dot or interpunct) is the primary multiplication sign (instead of ×): “a multiplied by b” is written either explicitly as a·b or implicitly as ab depending on context.

In biology, the multiplication sign is used in a botanical hybrid name, where it is read as cross.

Contents

In computer software

The × symbol is listed in Unicode letterlike symbols and is U+00D7 in Unicode. It can be invoked in various operating systems as per the table below.

There is a similar character ⨯ at U+2A2F, but this is not always considered identical to U+00D7, as it is intended to explicitly denote the cross product of two vectors.

Apple Macintosh in Character Palette, search for MULTIPLICATION SIGN[3][4][5]
HTML × and ×
Microsoft Windows Alt + 0215 or
Alt + +00D7[6]
Microsoft Word U+00D7
OpenOffice.org unknown
TeX \times
Unicode U+00D7
XML unknown

See also

References

  1. ^ Florian Cajori (1919). A History of Mathematics. Macmillan. http://books.google.com/books?id=bBoPAAAAIAAJ&pg=PA157&dq=inauthor:cajori+william-oughtred+multiplication.  
  2. ^ Stallings, L. (2000). "A Brief History of Algebraic Notation". School Science and Mathematics 100 (5): 230–235. ISSN 00366803.  
  3. ^ http://www.apple.com/pro/techniques/glyphspalette Apple Charater Palette Instructions (English)
  4. ^ http://www.apple.com/de/pro/tips/specialchar.html Apple Sonderzeichen (German / Deutsch)
  5. ^ http://www.typografie.info/typowiki/index.php?title=Mac_Zeichenpalette
  6. ^ http://www.fileformat.info/info/unicode/char/00D7/index.htm

External links

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