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Mathematics LibreTexts

1: Functions and Graphs

 

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Calculus is the mathematics that describes changes in functions. In this chapter, we review all the functions necessary to study calculus. We define polynomial, rational, trigonometric, exponential, and logarithmic functions. We review how to evaluate these functions, and we show the properties of their graphs. We provide examples of equations with terms involving these functions and illustrate the algebraic techniques necessary to solve them. In short, this chapter provides the foundation for the material to come. It is essential to be familiar and comfortable with these ideas before proceeding to the formal introduction of calculus in the next chapter.

  • 1.0: Prelude to Functions and Graphs
    In this chapter, we review all the functions necessary to study calculus. We define polynomial, rational, trigonometric, exponential, and logarithmic functions. We review how to evaluate these functions, and we show the properties of their graphs. We provide examples of equations with terms involving these functions and illustrate the algebraic techniques necessary to solve them. In short, this chapter provides the foundation for the material to come. It is essential to be familiar and comfortab
  • 1.1: Review of Functions
    In this section, we provide a formal definition of a function and examine several ways in which functions are represented—namely, through tables, formulas, and graphs. We study formal notation and terms related to functions. We also define composition of functions and symmetry properties. Most of this material will be a review for you, but it serves as a handy reference to remind you of some of the algebraic techniques useful for working with functions.
  • 1.2: Basic Classes of Functions
    We begin by reviewing the basic properties of linear and quadratic functions, and then generalize to include higher-degree polynomials. By combining root functions with polynomials, we can define general algebraic functions and distinguish them from the transcendental functions we examine later in this chapter. We finish the section with piecewise-defined functions and take a look at how to sketch the graph of a function that has been shifted, stretched, or reflected from its initial form.
  • 1.3: Trigonometric Functions
    Trigonometric functions are used to model many phenomena, including sound waves, vibrations of strings, alternating electrical current, and the motion of pendulums. In fact, almost any repetitive, or cyclical, motion can be modeled by some combination of trigonometric functions. In this section, we define the six basic trigonometric functions and look at some of the main identities involving these functions.
  • 1.4: Inverse Functions
    An inverse function reverses the operation done by a particular function. Whatever a function does, the inverse function undoes it. In this section, we define an inverse function formally and state the necessary conditions for an inverse function to exist. We examine how to find an inverse function and study the relationship between the graph of a function and the graph of its inverse. Then we apply these ideas to define and discuss properties of the inverse trigonometric functions.
  • 1.5: Exponential and Logarithmic Functions
    The exponential function \(y=b^x\) is increasing if \(b>1\) and decreasing if \(0<b<1\). Its domain is \((−∞,∞)\) and its range is \((0,∞)\). The logarithmic function \(y=log_b(x)\) is the inverse of \(y=b^x\). Its domain is \((0,∞)\) and its range is \((−∞,∞)\). The natural exponential function is \(y=e^x\) and the natural logarithmic function is \(y=lnx=log_ex\). Given an exponential function or logarithmic function in base \(a\), we can make a change of base to convert this function to any ba
  • 1.E: Functions and Graphs (Exercises)
    These are homework exercises to accompany OpenStax's "Calculus" Textmap.

Thumbnail: The graph of \(f(x)=e^x\) has a tangent line with slope 1 at \(x=0\).

Contributors

Gilbert Strang (MIT) and Edwin “Jed” Herman (Harvey Mudd) with many contributing authors. This content by OpenStax is licensed with a CC-BY 3/0 license. Download for free at http://cnx.org/contents/fd53eae1-fa2...49835c3c@5.191.