How to Type Logarithms

By Riz Khan

The logarithm of a given number is the exponential value by which the base of the number must be raised to yield that number. For instance, the logarithm of 8 to base 2 is 3, which shows that 2 must be raised to the power 3 to yield 8. The specific method of typing logarithms varies depending on the software you use.

Step 1

Type a logarithm in Microsoft Word. Open the document and place the cursor at the point where you want to insert the logarithm. Type "log," followed by the subscript icon given under the "Font" category of the "Home" tab. Type the base of the logarithm in subscript; for instance, "2." Press the subscript icon again to revert to normal font. Type the number for which you are determining the logarithm; for instance, "8." Enter the "=" sign and type the value of the logarithm; for instance, "3."

Step 2

Type a logarithm in Excel. Open the spreadsheet and click the cell in which you want to insert the logarithm. Type the formula "=log(number, base)," replacing the number and base by numeric values of the logarithm. If the base is kept blank, then Excel will assume that the base of the logarithm is "10."

Step 3

Type a logarithm function in OpenOffice Math. Click the "Math commands window" and type the formula "log_{base}(number)," replacing the base and number by their respective values.