# Number of possible rod cuts of a long rod .

Basically I am trying to understand the concept of dynamic programming via Rod Cutting example.

How the number of ways in which a rod of length $n$ units can be cut is ${2}^{n-1}$ and not $2^n$?

Consider the smallest cut be of one unit and there can also be a case where there is no cut at all .

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There are $n-1$ potential cutting points. For each point you face a binary choice: "to cut or not to cut - that is the question". – Jyrki Lahtonen Aug 31 '12 at 12:37
@JyrkiLahtonen I see . thanks . – Geek Aug 31 '12 at 12:39

I take it you are only allowed to cut the rod into integer lengths. I don't know about dynamic programming, but if you mark all the places where you are allowed to cut the rod, there are $n-1$ of them, and at each of those $n-1$ places, either you cut, or you don't, making, all told, $2^{n-1}$ different ways to cut.