﻿ Meaning of Absolute Value in plain English with pictures, diagrams and examples. A simple way to understand absolute value is .. # Meaning of Absolute value

The formal definition of absolute value goes something like the following: "the magnitude of a real number without regard to its sign".

#### What the heck does that mean?

In plain "English", this means "how far from Zero" a number is, and the simplest way to understand this concept is by looking at some graphs!

Diagram 1

Diagram 1 above shows the $$|2|$$ on a number line. As you can see, both $$-2$$ and $$2$$ satisfy the $$|2|$$ because both of those numbers are '2' units from zero!

##### Example 2
Diagram 2

Diagram 2 above shows the $$|4|$$ on a number line. As you can see, both $$-4$$ and $$4$$ satisfy the $$|4|$$ because both of those numbers are '4' units from zero!

### General Formula and Graph

##### Problem 1

'3' because $$-3$$ and $$3$$ are both the same distance from zero.

##### Problem 2

There is no number that satisfies this . Because $$5 \ne 4$$ . And the distance form zero must be the same.