The Decimal Point

So much for the left of the decimal point; the places on the left are used to express integral numbers. Places on the right of the decimal point are used to express fractions of the kind called decimal fractions, which are simply fractions having ten or some power of ten, for their denominator. Thus .8 indicates eight tenths, .88 indicates eighty eight hundredths and so for all decimal fractions.

A number placed next to the decimal point on the right indicates the number of tenths to be taken, if two places from the decimal point it indicates hundredths, if three places from the decimal point it indicate^ thousandths and the same system is carried out to any extent.

If a single figure is written, without any decimal point next it, it expresses the number of units. If a single figure is to express tens, hundreds or other decimal product, ciphers are used to indicate its position, which are placed to its right; if a single figure is to express a decimal fraction, ciphers on its left fix its position with reference to the decimal point.

A number placed next to the decimal point on right indicates tenths; placed next to the decimal point on the left, it indicates units. This is inconsistent and suggests that the proper place for the decimal point would be where units are placed. This of course is not practical; logic has to yield to practicability.

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