
A logarithm is the functional inverse of exponentiation.^{[1]} Written in algebraic notation,
The exponent, x in the equation, is also called the antilogarithm. Click on the blue point in manipulative 1 and drag it to change the figure. Note that the value of x and y on the point on the blue line (y=e^{x}), is swapped on the point on the green line (y=log_{e}x). This is a consequence of y=log_{e}x being the inverse of y=e^{x}. 
To convert an exponent to a logarithm, use the definition of logarithms:
log_{a}y = x iff y = a^{x}.
Start with 5^{x} = 25. Substitute like values into the definition.
5^{x} = 25 ⇒ x = log_{5}25.
To convert a logarithm to an exponent, use the definition of logarithms:
log_{a}y = x iff y = a^{x}.
Start with log_{2}x = 3. Substitute like values into the definition.
log_{2}x = 3 ⇒ x = 2^{3}.
An equation such as 3^{x} = 5 is difficult to solve without using logarithms. However, converting the equation to a logarithm makes it easy to solve. Use the definition of a logarithm: 3^{x} = 5 ⇒ log_{3}5 = x. Calculating the logarithm gives x ≈ 1.46497.
The common logarithm is a logarithm using a base 10. When writing a common logarithm, leave out the base: log 14 means the same things as log_{10}14. Common logarithms are commonly used in business applications.
The natural logarithm is a logarithm with a base e. The natural logarithm is written ln x. ln x means the same thing as log_{e}x. Natural logarithms are used in mathematics and science.
Name  Equation 

Product Property  
Quotient Property  
Power Property  
Change of Base Property  
Table 1: Properties of Logarithms 
Manipulative 1: Graph of a Logarithm. Created with GeoGebra. 
#  A  B  C  D 
E  F  G  H  I 
J  K  L  M  N 
O  P  Q  R  S 
T  U  V  W  X 
Y  Z 
All Math Words Encyclopedia is a service of
Life is a Story Problem LLC.
Copyright © 20052011 Life is a Story Problem LLC. All rights reserved.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons AttributionNoncommercialShare Alike 3.0 License