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let $u$ and $v$ be two strings. Is $(u.v)^R$ equals to $u^R.v^R$?

Note: The $R$ notation means reverse order and the $.(dot)$ notation means concatenation.

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  • $\begingroup$ Have you tried a few strings? For example, $u=0$, $v=1$? $\endgroup$
    – John L.
    Feb 17, 2019 at 10:55
  • $\begingroup$ @Apass.Jack I have tried to prove it. But I couldn't.So I thought maybe they are not equal. $\endgroup$
    – siaVash
    Feb 17, 2019 at 11:03
  • $\begingroup$ Let me rephrase my suggestion. Have you checked that equality with a few concrete instances? For example, what are $(u.v)^R$ and $u^R.v^R$ when $u$ is the string 0 and $v$ is the string 1? $\endgroup$
    – John L.
    Feb 17, 2019 at 11:06

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No, $(u\cdot v)^R\not=u^R\cdot v^R$ more often than not.

For example, if $u$ is the string $race$ and $v$ is the string $car$. Then $$(u\cdot v)^R=(racecar)^R=racecar$$ while $$u^R\cdot v^R=(race)^R(car)^R=ecarrac.$$


Here are a few related exercises. All variables stand for strings.

Exercise 1. If $u$ or $v$ is the empty word, then $(u\cdot v)^R=u^R\cdot v^R$.

Exercise 2. If $u$ or $v$ are words of length 1 such that $(u\cdot v)^R=u^R\cdot v^R$. Then $u=v$.

Exercise 3. If $u=u^R$ and $v=v^R$, can we guarantee $(u\cdot v)^R=u^R\cdot v^R$?

Exercise 4. Prove that $(u\cdot v)^R=v^R\cdot u^R$.

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  • $\begingroup$ I have to use induction to prove it? $\endgroup$
    – siaVash
    Feb 17, 2019 at 14:05
  • $\begingroup$ Yes, mathematically speaking. It becomes clear and obvious once you have played with several examples. $\endgroup$
    – John L.
    Feb 17, 2019 at 14:08
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    $\begingroup$ Inequality "more often than not": to be precise we have $(uv)^R = u^Rv^R$ precisely when $u$ and $v$ are powers of the same word $\endgroup$ Feb 17, 2019 at 16:44

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