Natural numbers
The counting numbers 1, 2, 3 … are called natural numbers. The set of natural
numbers is denoted by N. N = {1, 2, 3, …}
Whole numbers
If we include zero to the set of natural numbers, then we get the set of whole numbers.
The set of whole numbers is denoted by W. W = {0, 1, 2, …}
2. Every natural number is a rational number.
3. Every whole number is a rational number. [Since every whole number w can be expressed as
1 ].
4. Every integer is a rational number.
Example:
Find 5 rational numbers between ^{3} and ^{5}
.
Solution:
3 
3 

3 
9 

9 
6 

54 

8 
8 

3 
24 
24 6 
144 

5 

5 
2 

10 

10 

6 
60 

12 
12 2 
24 
24 

6 
144 

It can be observed that: 

54 
55 
56 
57 
58 
59 
60 



144 
144 
144 
144 
144 
144 
144 

3 
55 
7 
19 
29 
59 
5 








8 
144 
18 
48 
72 
144 
12 

Thus, 
55 
7 
19 
29 
and 
59 
5 rational numbers between ^{3} and 

, 
, 
, 
are 

144 
18 
48 
72 
144 
8 
The collection of all rational numbers and irrational numbers is called real numbers. So, a real number is either rational or irrational. Note: Every real number can be represented by a unique point on the number line (and vice versa). So, the number line is also called the real number line.
To locate
_{6} on the number line, we first need to construct a length of
Example:
Terminating 


15 Terminating 1.875 


Nonterminating recurring 1.333 ....... 24 1.846153846153 1.846153 
Nonterminating recurring 


13 
Example:
Show that 1.23434 …. can be written in the form ^{p}
, where p and q are integers
and q 0. Solution:
Here, two digits are repeating. Multiplying (1) by 100, we get:
Now, it is seen that 3 < 3.3232 < 4. Divide the gap between 3 and 4 on the number line into 10 equal parts and locate 3.3232 between 3.3 and 3.4 [as 3.3 < 3.3232 < 3.4]. To locate the given number between 3.3 and 3.4 more accurately, we divide this gap into 10 equal parts. It is seen that 3.32 < 3.3232 < 3.33. We continue the same procedure by dividing the gap between 3.32 and 3.33 into 10 equal parts. It is seen that 3.323 < 3.3232 < 3.324. Now, by dividing the gap between 3.323 and 3.324 into 10 equal parts, we can locate 3.3232.
Identities If a and b are positive real numbers, then