A

method of writing

approximate forms of

large numbers in which the

magnitude is separated out of the number and expressed as a

power of

ten. For instance,

6.02 x 10^{23} is a short way of writing 602000000000000000000000.

Computers and some calculators often use a shorthand "e notation" for writing numbers in exponential notation in which the times sign and the 10 are replaced by a letter e (sometimes capitalized), so 6.02E23 for the number above. This is used in contexts where the superscript for the exponent cannot be produced.