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You know the derivative short-cut rule for functions of the form
A
y x
=
, where
A
is a constant. Today,you derive the rule for the similar-looking function
x
y A
=
. Your CAS will be your guide, but first weneed to decrease its power.
NOTE:
Your CAS is sometimes
too
powerful. It is very important that you follow the precise syntaxinstructions for this activity. To understand WHY exponential derivatives follow a particular form,you should
only
compute what is requested in each of the following questions. Don’t ruin the story!1.
SET THE CAS MODE TO “APPROXIMATE” – You MUST do this FIRST.
2. You have already learned how to compute derivatives on your CAS. Prove to yourself that you cando this by first mentally computing the derivative of
7
10 3
y x x
π
=
+
and then having your CAS provide the same answer.
You are to find derivative formulas for each of the following functions:
1110, 5, 2, 1, ,210
x x x x x x
y y y y y y
⎞
= = = = = =
⎟ ⎠
Since you don’t know the rule for this form yet, you will use numerical techniques to derive it. Startwith
10
x
y
=
. Pick 5 different
x
-values, enter them in the table below. Then compute
approximations
for
( )
f x
and
( )
f x
at the specific points as shown above, and enter the results in the table below.
Besure to use the following syntax to find the derivative for each
x
-value (for example at
x
=
a
):
( )
( )
=
|
f x x adx
.
x
( )
10
x
f x
=

( )
f x
1.2.3.4.5.Sketch the ordered pairs
( )
( )
,
x f x
on the axes below. Your job is to find an equation for this graph.

From derivative sketches in earlier classes, you learned that derivatives of exponential functions look suspiciously like exponential functions. For this reason, the pattern above
ought
to look like some typeof
x
y C D
=
. Since
and
D
are obviously related to the original function,
D
is the easy parameter.Since steep exponentials have steep derivatives, what does this suggest about the value for
D
relative to
A
? Use this value and an appropriate regression to help you compute a reasonable estimate of
to
at least
four (4) decimal places.
C = D =
Iteration:
Repeat this task for the other five exponential functions. One of them should be
very simple
). In thetable below, record the values you get for
and
D
for each function.
( )
f x
C D
1.
10
x
y
=
2.
5
x
y
=
3.
2
x
y
=
4.
1
x
y
=
5.
12
x
y
⎞
=
⎟ ⎠
6.
110
x
y
⎞
=
⎟ ⎠

It’s almost over:
Just like the value of
D
was related to the original exponential function,
x
y A
=
, so is the value of
.The relationship is just not as easy to see.Since
is related to the original
A
, it should make sense to call it a function of
A
, or in mathematicalterms,
( )
C g A
=
. Your final task is to find the function
( )
y g x
=
. Since

g is a function, you haveseveral ordered pairs,
( )
A,C
, that you can graph. Briefly, explain why the order of the ordered pair,
( )
A,C
, makes sense:From your work above, you should have six ordered pairs,
( )
A,C
. Graph them on the axes below:
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