# Introduction to Polar Coordinates | Summary and Q&A

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May 26, 2020
by
The Math Sorcerer
Introduction to Polar Coordinates

## TL;DR

This video introduces the concept of polar coordinates, which is an alternative coordinate system to Cartesian coordinates, using directed distance (R) and directed angle (θ).

## Key Insights

• 📁 Polar coordinates utilize a directed distance (R) and a directed angle (θ).
• 🫥 The polar axis is a horizontal line used as a reference for measuring the angle θ.
• 🔺 Plotting points in polar coordinates involves traveling along the angle θ and extending the distance R.
• 🐻‍❄️ Negative values in polar coordinates involve traveling in the opposite direction of the angle θ.
• ❎ Identical polar coordinates can be represented by different combinations of signs (negative R, positive θ) and (positive R, negative θ).
• 🐻‍❄️ The unit circle can help visualize the angle θ in polar coordinates.
• 🐕‍🦺 Polar coordinates can be converted to Cartesian coordinates and vice versa.

## Transcript

in this video we're going to introduce the notion of polar coordinates so polar coordinates so the polar coordinate system is another coordinate system besides the usual Cartesian coordinates with X&Y so let me show you the set up so we have a point here and I'm gonna draw a line like this and the end point of this line when I call this point R the... Read More

### Q: What is the difference between polar coordinates and Cartesian coordinates?

Polar coordinates utilize directed distance (R) and directed angle (θ), while Cartesian coordinates use X and Y coordinates.

### Q: What is the polar axis in polar coordinates?

The polar axis is a horizontal line in polar coordinates, serving as a reference for measuring the angle θ.

### Q: How do you plot a point in polar coordinates?

To plot a point in polar coordinates, first, travel along the angle θ and then extend the distance R from the origin in the specified direction.

### Q: Can polar coordinates have negative values?

Yes, polar coordinates can have negative values. If R is negative, the distance is measured in the opposite direction of the angle θ.

## Summary & Key Takeaways

• Polar coordinates are an alternative coordinate system to Cartesian coordinates, using a directed distance (R) and a directed angle (θ).

• The polar axis is a horizontal line, with θ representing the angle and R representing the distance from the origin.

• Plotting points in polar coordinates involves traveling along the angle θ and then extending the distance R in the specified direction.