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# M10 #29

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Intern
Joined: 21 Sep 2011
Posts: 14
GMAT 1: 570 Q32 V36

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11 Apr 2012, 09:16
Hi, I found this problem in GMAT Club test 10:

If X and Y are prime integers, what is |X - Y|?

1) X + Y is a prime integer.
2) X and Y are less than 5.

My answer was B, 2 is sufficient. However, official answer is C. The explanation is that X and Y could be the same integer. This is probably a very basic question to ask, but I though that if you assigned two different variables, they would stand for two different value. E.g. If X =2, then Y cannot also equal 2.

Could someone clarify for me whether two different variables in a GMAT problem can, indeed, have the exact same value? E.g. X=Y. What is the standard convention in mathematics?
Math Expert
Joined: 02 Sep 2009
Posts: 39607
Re: M10 #29 [#permalink]

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11 Apr 2012, 09:50
1
KUDOS
Expert's post
FromScratch wrote:
Hi, I found this problem in GMAT Club test 10:

If X and Y are prime integers, what is |X - Y|?

1) X + Y is a prime integer.
2) X and Y are less than 5.

My answer was B, 2 is sufficient. However, official answer is C. The explanation is that X and Y could be the same integer. This is probably a very basic question to ask, but I though that if you assigned two different variables, they would stand for two different value. E.g. If X =2, then Y cannot also equal 2.

Could someone clarify for me whether two different variables in a GMAT problem can, indeed, have the exact same value? E.g. X=Y. What is the standard convention in mathematics?

Unless it is explicitly stated otherwise, different variables CAN represent the same number. So, x=y is a valid scenario.
_________________
Re: M10 #29   [#permalink] 11 Apr 2012, 09:50
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# M10 #29

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