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7.7.4 Complex Formats

There are three supported notations for complex numbers in rectangular form. The default is as a pair of real numbers enclosed in parentheses and separated by a comma: ‘(a,b)’. The d c (calc-complex-notation) command selects this style.

The other notations are d i (calc-i-notation), in which numbers are displayed in ‘a+bi’ form, and d j (calc-j-notation) which displays the form ‘a+bj’ preferred in some disciplines.

Complex numbers are normally entered in ‘(a,b)’ format. If you enter ‘2+3i’ as an algebraic formula, it will be stored as the formula ‘2 + 3 * i’. However, if you use = to evaluate this formula and you have not changed the variable ‘i’, the ‘i’ will be interpreted as ‘(0,1)’ and the formula will be simplified to ‘(2,3)’. Other commands (like calc-sin) will not interpret the formula ‘2 + 3 * i’ as a complex number. See Variables, under “special constants.”