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Q:

# How is slope used in real life?

A:

Slope is used to construct wheelchair ramps, roads and stairs, according to the University of Regina's Math Central website. Slope is a way of describing the steepness of an object.

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Slope is very important in the construction field because it often dictates the best way to complete a project. Special building materials are used for low-slope roofs, so a construction worker must know the slope of the roof before beginning a shingling project. The slope of a road affects water runoff, so civil engineers and construction workers must plan accordingly. Most municipalities have rules regarding the minimum slope of their roads.

Skiing enthusiasts pay special attention to the slopes of their favorite trails. The greater the slope of a trail, the more challenging it is. Knowing the slope of a particular trail makes it easier for skiers to judge the danger of skiing on that trail.

Slope is also important to people who use wheelchairs. If a wheelchair ramp is too steep, it may be difficult to use. Constructing a ramp with the right slope is especially important for people who use manual wheelchairs instead of power wheelchairs. If a ramp is too steep, the user may not have the upper arm strength necessary to power a manual chair up the ramp.

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## Related Questions

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Radical expressions are used in real life in carpentry and masonry. Rational expressions are used to compute interest and depreciation in the financial industry.

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The Pythagorean theorem is used often in construction, in engineering, in architecture, in design, in art and in aeronautics. The theorem states that, given a right triangle with sides a, b and c, where c represents the hypotenuse (or longest side), the sum of the square of the two sides (a squared plus b squared) is always equal to c squared.

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No one is sure why the letter "m" is used to represent slope in the equation of a line. While there are many theories, the variable may simply have been arbitrarily chosen and used as a standard convention.