# Why use standard (index) form for small numbers?

Example 1

It makes small distances easier to understand

The width of a human hair can be written as:

1.7times10^-5m

Or

0.000017m

Which is easier to understand?

We think 1.7times10^-5m

Example 2

It makes currency exchange rates easier to understand

The Vietnamese Dong is such a weak currency 1 Dong is worth approximately:

£3.39times10^-5

Or

£0.0000339

Which is easier to understand?

We think £3.39times10^-5

Example 3

It makes small masses easier to understand

The mass in grams of one individual carbon atom is:

1.994times10^-23g

Or

0.000,000,000,000,000,000,000,01994g

Which is easier to understand?

We think 1.994times10^-23g