2007-08-20 What is Calculus

2007-08-20 What is Calculus - -' To the Student What Is...

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Unformatted text preview: -' To the Student What Is Calculus? Calculus is the mathematics of moti!)n and change. Where there is motion or growth, where variable forces are at work producing acceleration, calculus'is the right math- em~tics to apply. This was true in the beginnings of the subject, and it is true today. Calculus was first invente~ to meet the mathematical needs of the scientists of the sixteenth arid seventeenth centuries, needs that were mainly mechanical in na. JiIl.. IDifferential calcutus dealt 'with the problem of calculating' {ltes of change. It ...nanled.people to define slopes of curves, to calculate velocities and accelerations of mo.Y.ing-.bod.ieSrto-lind-firing-angles that would give cannons their greatest range" and to predict the times when planets would be closest together or f811hestapart. In~ tegral calcu1~ dealt with the p~blem of detennining a function from information about its rate of change. It enabled people to calculate' the ~ture location of a body from its present position and a knowledge of the foices acting on it, to find the areas...
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