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Greater Than Or Less Than Calculator

Created by Wei Bin Loo
Reviewed by Anna Szczepanek, PhD and Rijk de Wet
Last updated: Jan 18, 2024


With this greater than or less than calculator, we aim to help you to compare two numbers and tell you which one is greater.

We have written this article to help you understand:

  • What the greater than or less than comparison is;
  • How to compare two numbers; and
  • How to use the greater or less than signs.

We will also demonstrate some examples (such as whether -9 is greater or less than -6) to help you understand the greater or less than calculation. You can also check out our comparing fractions calculator to understand more on this topic.

What is the greater than or less than calculation?

Understanding the comparison of two numbers is an important concept for many mathematical processes. It is often used to determine the relationship between two numbers.

The greater than or less than comparison is used to determine the relationship between two numbers. If one number is of a greater magnitude than another number, then it is said to be greater than that number. For example, if you have two numbers, 3 and 5, the comparison of these two numbers will tell you that 5 is greater than 3.

We will explain the greater than, less than or equal to calculation in the next section.

How do I compare two numbers?

You can compare two numbers in three simple steps:

  1. Determine if the two numbers are both positive or negative.
  2. If the numbers have different sign, the positive number is greater.
  3. If both numbers are positive, the one further away from zero is greater.
  4. If both are negative, the one further away from zero is less.
  5. If the numbers are the same, they are equal.

Our greater than, less than or equal to calculator also returns the greater than or less than symbols, because it's essential to understand them. These are:

  • <, meaning the former number is less than the latter number;
  • >, meaning the former number is greater than the latter one; and
  • =, meaning they are the same number (i.e., equal).

You can also check out our rational zeros calculator and complex number calculator to understand more on this topic.

Other uses of greater than or less than calculation

The greater than and less than symbols are not just used to compare two numbers. They can also be used in programming languages and other applications. In programming, they are used to compare values or objects to determine whether a certain condition or statement is true or false. For example, in a programming language such as JavaScript, the greater than and less than signs can be used to compare two values and determine if one is greater than or less than the other.

Moreover, the greater than and less than signs can also be used in mathematical expressions to represent the comparison of two numbers. For example, in an expression such as 3x + 5 > 10, the greater than sign means that the value at the left-hand side (3x + 5) is greater than the value 10. Such an equation is known as an inequality (unlike an equation with an equals-to symbol, which is an equality).

FAQ

Is -9 greater or less than -6?

This comparison is straightforward: -9 is less than -6. This is because both these numbers are negative and -9 is further away from zero on the number line than -6.

What is the greater than or less than signs?

The greater than or less than symbols is easy to understand. > means greater than and < means less than. The openings of the > and < symbols always point to the greater number. There are also symbols and which mean greater than or equal to and less than or equal too, respectively.

Why is greater or less than calculation important?

The greater than or less than calculation is important as the logic is used in many fields. For instance, this logic is fundamental in programming language such as Python and JavaScript.

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