solve 81-(2^-2) Explanation 1: 81 is the same as saying 34 writing out the whole problem again, replacing 81 with 34 you get 34(2^-2) (2^-2) is the same as saying 1/2^2=1/4 3-4*1/4 = 3^-4/4 = 3^-1 = 1/3 Explanation 2: 81 is simplified to a smaller number and is the same as saying 3^4. So our equation now looks like this: 3^-4(2^-2). The 2^-2 is the same as saying 1/2^2 which is the same as saying 1/4. So now we have 3^-4/4, which equals 3^-1. The 3^-1 is the same as saying 1/3. The answer is 1/3.