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CHAPTER 1

Sets and Real Numbers


Set Theory
Georg Ferdinand Ludwig Philipp Cantor (1845-1918)
SET NOTATIONS AND DEFINITIONS
Set a well-defined collection of objects
Notation: capital letters, braces used with words or symbols
Element or Member an object which belongs to a set
Notation: lower-case letters, ,
Cardinality or Cardinal Number of a Finite Set the unique number n such that the elements of A
are in one-to-one correspondence with the elements of the set of counting numbers from 1 to n
Notation: n (A ), A
Finite Sets if it is possible to enumerate all the elements of the set
Infinite Sets if it is not possible to enumerate all the elements of the set
Universal Set the set containing all the elements under consideration
Notation: U
Empty Set (Null Set) set with no elements
Notation: j , f ,

METHODS OF SPECIFYING SETS


1. Roster or List or Tabulation Method the set is indicated by listing or enumerating the
elements and enclosing them in braces
o Enclosed in braces
o Separated by commas
Examples:
a. {a,e,i,o,u}
b. { }
c. {1,2,3,4,5,}
2. Rule or Defining Property Method the set is indicated by enclosing in braces a descriptive
phrase the elements of a set are described based on the characteristics or properties common
to the elements in the set
Set Builder Notation
o x denotes a typical member of the set
o Colon "such that"
o Comma "and"

SET RELATIONS
1. Subset (A B ) : A is a subset of B if and only if all the elements of A are in B.
A is not a subset of B if there is one or more elements of A not in B.
Notes:
For any set A, A U .
For any set A, A A .
If A B and B C , then A C .
2. Proper Subset (A B ) : A is a proper subset of B if all elements of A are in B and one or more
elements of B are not in A ( A B but A B )
A set is not a proper subset of itself.
3. Disjoint Sets: A and B are disjoint if they do not have common elements.
An empty set is disjoint from any set. It is also disjoint from itself.
4. Equal Sets (A = B ) : A and B are equal if and only if A and B have identical elements. Note
that the arrangement of elements may not be the same.
The order of elements in a set is immaterial.
The repetition (multiplicity) of elements in a set is irrelevant.
A and B are equal if and only if A B and B A .
5. Equivalent Sets (A ~ B ) : A and B are equivalent if and only if there exists a one-to-one
correspondence the two sets.
A ~ B if and only if n (A ) = n (B ) .
Equal sets are equivalent, but equivalent sets are not equal.

6. Power Set 2 A ,(A ) : The power set of A is the set of all subsets of A.
If n( A) = a , then n ((A )) = n 2 A = 2n ( A ) = 2a .
Class (Collection) set of sets

( )

SET OPERATIONS
1. Union of Sets: The union of A and B is the set of all elements that are in A or in B.
A B = {x x A or x B}
Remarks:
n (A B ) = n (A ) + n (B ) - n (A B )
n (A B C ) = n (A ) + n (B ) + n (C ) - n (A B ) - n (A C ) - n (B C ) + n (A B C )
Set union is commutative: A B = B A
A and B are always subset of their union: A A B , B A B
For any set A:
i. A A = A
ii. U A = U
iii. A = A
A B = implies A = and B =

2. Intersection of Sets: The intersection of A and B is the set of all elements that are common to
A and B.
A B = {x x A and x B}
Remarks:
n (A B ) = n (A ) + n (B ) - n (A B )
Set intersection is commutative: A B = B A
Each of A and B contains their intersection as a subset: A B A , A B B
If A and B are disjoint, then A B = .
For any set A:
i. A A = A
ii. U A = A
iii. A =
3. Difference of Two Sets: Set difference A minus B consists of elements which belong to A but
which do not belong to B.
A - B = {x x A and x B}
Remarks:
Set difference is not commutative: A - B B - A
Set A contains A - B as a subset: A - B A
The sets A - B , A B , and B - A are mutually disjoint
Symmetric Difference consists of those elements which belong to A but not both A and B.
A B = (A B ) \ (A B ) = (A \ B ) (B \ A )
4. Complement of a Set: The complement of A is the set of elements that are in the universal
set and are not in A.
A = Ac = {x x U and x A}
Remarks:

The complement of the complement of a set is the set itself: (A) = A


The union of any set and its complement is the universal set: A A = U
Any set and its complement are disjoint: A A = .
The complement of the universal set is the empty set: U =
The complement of the empty set is the universal set: = U
The difference of A and B is equal to the intersection of A and the complement of B:
A - B = A B
For any two sets A and B: (A - B ) B =

For any two sets A and B (De Morgans Laws): (A B ) = A B , (A B ) = A B

5. Cartesian Product: The Cartesian product of A and B is the set of all ordered pairs (x, y )
where x is in A and y is in B.
A B = {(x, y ) x A and y B}
Remarks:
n (A B ) = n (A ) n (B )
Set product is not commutative: A B B A
Unless A = B or one of the factors is empty.
For any set A: A = A =

LAWS OF THE ALGEBRA OF SETS


Theorem: Let A, B, and C be sets.
1. Idempotent Laws

AA = A
AA = A

2. Commutative Laws:

AB = B A
AB = B A

3. Associative Laws:

(A B ) C = A (B C )
(A B ) C = A (B C )

4. Distributive Laws:

A (B C ) = (A B ) (A C )
A (B C ) = (A B ) (A C )

5. Identity Laws:

6. Involution Law:
7. Complement Laws:

8. De Morgans Laws:

A = A
A U = U
A =
A U = A

(A )

c c

=A

A Ac = U
Uc =
A Ac =
c = U

(A B )c = Ac B c
(A B )c = Ac B c

VENN DIAGRAM
The Venn Diagram is a convenient way of representing set relations and set operations.
The device was invented by John Venn
The universal set is represented by a rectangle and all its subsets are drawn as circles within
the rectangle
Euler Diagram (Euler Circles) Leonhard Euler