15 Glossary-A Quick Guide to the Mathematical Jargon

15 Glossary-A Quick Guide to the Mathematical Jargon - Next...

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Next: About this document ... Up: How to Ace Calculus Previous: Integrals and the Natural Log Glossary: A Quick Guide to the Mathematical Jargon absolute maximum. The all-time, one-and-only, single, absolute and total maximum value of a function over a specified domain of the function. (Although it is the unique maximum value, it could occur at more than one point, as when you have two mountain peaks of exactly the same height.) Not to be confused with a local maximum, which is to the absolute maximum as the police chief is to the army chief-of-staff. The absolute maximum is sometimes also called the global maximum. absolute minimum. Same definition as for the absolute maximum, only substitute the word ``minimum'' everywhere the word maximum occurs. Also substitute ``lawyer'' for ``police chief'' and (optionally, depending on your politics) ``politician'' for ``chief-of- staff''. On a graph , it is a point that is having a really bad day. As low as it can get. absolute value Drop the negative sign if there is one. Otherwise, just leave the number alone. acceleration. Acceleration is the rate of change of the velocity. It causes that funny feeling in the pit of your stomach as you are mushed backward into the seat when somebody really puts the pedal to the metal. Since the rate of change of a function is its derivative, the acceleration is the derivative of the velocity function. Since the velocity function is itself the derivative of the function giving your position, the acceleration function is the second derivative of the function giving your position.(In mathese, a = dv / dt = d 2 s / dt 2 , where s is the position function). algebra. Hold it. If you don't know what algebra is (a bunch of letters like x and y and a bunch of rules for playing around with them), then you shouldn't be taking calculus. Return to GO, do not collect $200. antiderivative. You guessed it. This is the opposite of the derivative. Doesn't deserve the negative connotations associated to some of the other `anti' words like `antichrist', `antisocial' or `anti-macassar' (that little lace doily you used to see on your grandma's couch - made obsolete by plastic slipcovers). The antiderivative of a function f ( x ) is another function F ( x ) whose derivative is f ( x ). Also called the indefinite integral of f ( x ). The `antiderivative' terminology is traditionally usually used just before the introduction of indefinite integrals , and then never used again, having been forever replaced with the term `indefinite integral'.
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antidifferentiation. The process of taking an antiderivative. Also a strong aversion to distinguishing between different people, as with parents who insist on calling all five of their children `Frank'. asymptote. An asymptote is like one of those people you meet at a party who is devastatingly attractive and you just want to get close. You maneuver your way next to them and casually strike up a conversation. Making good time, you get closer and closer, till you're practically knocking knees. In calculus, you just keep getting closer. In the real
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