# Thread: extra set of () to clarify

1. ## extra set of () to clarify

Can someone please explain the reason for using an extra set of () to clarify. It was suggested to use with MAX.
How would I do a search for this in this forum. I tried but got no returns even though this was suggested in this forum.

2. Could you explain the context of the extra parenthesis. What do you want to clarify? Extra sets generally will not matter. I would use them to ensure the proper order of the arithmatic or to help set something apart, but the question is content dependent....

Steve

3. Consider:

5+4*3/2 = 11 yes 11

5+((4*3)/2) is how Excel sees the above. you don't need the parenthesis but it sure makes things clearer.

4. It was in reference to:
=IF((MAX(0,TODAY()-LOOKUP(9E+300,C:C)))=0,"1st",(MAX(0,TODAY()-LOOKUP(9E+300,C:C))))
I think the MAX was being emphasized as an option/method to avoid negative numbers.
It appears from the 2 previous replies that it is a scripting method to highlight part of a formula or organize part of a formula to show the logic/methodology without effecting its function.

5. Which "extra set of () to clarify" are you asking about?
The formula =IF((MAX(0,TODAY()-LOOKUP(9E+300,C:C)))=0,"1st",(MAX(0,TODAY()-LOOKUP(9E+300,C:C)))) has two places that use () after the function TODAY(). Those parenthesis are required for the TODAY function.

6. I don't think the extra set clarifies anything. I think the 2 extra sets make it more difficult to read
=IF((MAX(0,TODAY()-LOOKUP(9E+300,C:C)))=0,"1st",(MAX(0,TODAY()-LOOKUP(9E+300,C:C))))

and I would eliminate them:
=IF(MAX(0,TODAY()-LOOKUP(9E+300,C:C))=0,"1st",MAX(0,TODAY()-LOOKUP(9E+300,C:C)))

You could also use, which seems to be clearer to me:
=IF(TODAY()<=LOOKUP(9E+300,C:C),"1st",TODAY()-LOOKUP(9E+300,C:C))

You don't need to use the "Max" trick to make it never less <0 if you are testing for this very condition to make it something other than zero...

Steve

7. When writing more complex algorithms, you can choose clarity and/or brevity. I think clarity wins every time especially if you or someone else needs to read the code in the future and a complex statement isn't documented or explained.

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