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BASIC CALCULUS REFRESHER
Ismor Fischer, Ph.D. Dept. of Statistics UW-Madison

1.

Introduction.
This is a very condensed and simplified version of basic calculus, which is a prerequisite for many courses in Mathematics, Statistics, Engineering, Pharmacy, etc. It is not comprehensive, and absolutely not intended to be a substitute for a one-year freshman course in differential and integral calculus. You are strongly encouraged to do the included Exercises to reinforce the ideas. Important mathematical terms are in boldface; key formulas and concepts are boxed and highlighted . To view a color .pdf version of this document (recommended), see http://www.stat.wisc.edu/~ifischer.
()

2.

Exponents – Basic Definitions and Properties
For any real number base x, we define powers of x: x0 = 1, x1 = x, x2 = x ⋅ x, x3 = x ⋅ x ⋅ x, etc. (The exception is 00, which is considered indeterminate.) Powers are also called exponents. Examples: 50 = 1, (−11.2)1 = −11.2, (8.6)2 = 8.6 × 8.6 = 73.96, 103 = 10 × 10 × 10 = 1000, (−3)4 = (−3) × (−3) × (−3) × (−3) = 81. Also, we can define fractional exponents in terms of roots, such as x1/2 = Similarly, x1/3 =
th 3

x , the square root of x.

x , the cube root of x, x2/3 =
th

( x)
3

2

, etc. In general, we have xm/n =

( x)
n

m

,

i.e., the n root of x, raised to the m power. Examples: 641/2 = 64 = 8, 643/2 =

(

64

)

3

= 83 = 512, 641/3 = 64 = 4, 642/3 =

3

(

3

64

)

2

= 42 = 16.

1 1 1 1 1 Finally, we can define negative exponents: x−r = xr . Thus, x−1 = x1 , x−2 = x2 , x−1/2 = x1/2 = , etc. x 1 1 1 Examples: 10−1 = 101 = 0.1, 7−2 = 72 = 49 , 36−1/2 = 1 1 = 6 , 9−5/2 = 36 1 1 1 = 35 = 243 .

( 9)

5

Properties of Exponents
1.
2.

xa ⋅ xb = xa+b Examples: x3 ⋅ x2 = x5, x1/2 ⋅ x1/3 = x5/6, x3 ⋅ x−1/2 = x5/2 xa a −b xb = x (xa)b = xab x5 x3 x3 Examples: x3 = x2, x5 = x−2, x1/2 = x5/2 Examples: (x3)2 = x6, (x−1/2)7 = x−7/2, (x2/3)5/7 = x10/21

3.

2

3. Functions and Their Graphs

Input x →

f

→ Output y

If a quantity y always depends on another quantity x in such a way that every value of x corresponds to one and only one value of y, then we say that “y is a function of x,” written y = f (x); x is said to be the independent variable, y is the dependent variable. (Example: “Distance traveled per hour (y) is a function of velocity (x).”) For a given function y = f(x), the set of all ordered pairs of (x, y)values that algebraically satisfy its equation is called the graph of the function, and can be represented geometrically by a collection of points in the XY-plane. (Recall that the XY-plane consists of two perpendicular copies of the real number line – a horizontal X-axis, and a vertical Y-axis – that intersect at a reference point (0, 0) called the origin, and which partition the plane into four disjoint regions called quadrants. Every point P in the plane can be represented by the ordered pair (x, y), where the first value is the x-coordinate – indicating its horizontal position relative to the origin – and the second value is the y-coordinate – indicating its vertical position relative to the origin. Thus, the point P(4, 7) is 4 units to right of, and 7 units up from, the origin.) Examples: y = f (x) = 7; y = f (x) = 2x + 3; y = f (x) = x2; y = f (x) = x1/2; y = f (x) = x−1; y = f (x) = 2x. The first three are examples of polynomial functions. (In particular, the first is constant, the second is linear, the third is quadratic.) The last is an exponential function; note that x is an exponent! Let’s consider these examples, one at a time. • y = f (x) = 7: If x = any value, then y = 7. That is, no matter what value of x is chosen, the value of the height y remains at a constant level of 7. Therefore, all points that satisfy this equation must have the form (x, 7), and thus determine the graph of a horizontal line, 7 units up. A few typical points are plotted in the figure. Exercise: What would the graph of the equation y = −4 look like? x = −4 ? y = 0 ? x = 0 ?

Descartes ~ 1640

(–1.8, 7)

(0, 7)

(2.5, 7)

y = f (x) = 2x + 3: If x = 0, then y = f (0) = 2(0) + 3 = 3, so the point (0, 3) is on the graph of this function. Likewise, if x = −1.5, then y = f (−1.5) = 2(−1.5) + 3 = 0, so the point (−1.5, 0) is also on the graph of this function. (However, many points, such as (1, 1), do not satisfy the equation, and so do not lie on the graph.) The set of all points (x, y) that do satisfy this linear equation forms the graph of a line in the XY-plane, hence the name. Exercise: What would the graph of the line y = x look like? y = −x ? The absolute value function y = |x| ?

(0, 3) (−1.5, 0)

”) Exercise: How does this graph differ from y = f(x) = x3 ? x4 ? Find a pattern for y = xn. 3. –64 does not exist as a real number.g. y2) that lie on the line. for n = 1. the effect of applying of either one. where the “square root” operation is defined (e. m = +2). +64 = ??. 2. (In this case. That is. lands you back to where you started from. Exercise: How does this graph differ from y = f(x) = x1/3 = x ? Hint: What is its domain? (E..g.” Similarly. the graph of –x2 is concave down. for x ≥ 0. the slope of any line is defined as the ratio of “height change” Δy to “length change” Δx. for the two points (0. +64 = +8).. (–1. 1). (−1.g.3 Notice that the line has the generic equation y = f (x) = mx + b . the composition of the function f(x) with its inverse – written f –1(x) – is equal to the initial value x itself. it “spills water. that is. it “holds water.. along with the first-quadrant portion of y = x2 for comparison. the curve is said to be concave up. (–3. the slope is m = −1.g. (2...) Hence the real-valued domain of this function is restricted to x ≥ 0 (i. when graphed together. 3) and 0−3 Δy = = 2. 9). The set of all points that satisfies this quadratic equation – e. followed immediately by the other. 1). since both (+8)2 = +64 and (–8)2 = +64.. 0).e. . 4. 9). positive values and zero). (1. and m is the slope of the line (in this example. In general.… • y = f (x) = x1/2 = x : The “square root” operation is not defined for negative values of x (e. For example. y1) and (x2. (0. Pictured here is its graph. – forms a curved parabola in the XY-plane. which confirms our observation. starting with a domain value x.5. the two functions exhibit symmetry across the “diagonal” line y = x (not explicitly drawn). (–2.5 − 0 Δx • y = f (x) = x2: This is not the equation of a straight line (because of the “squaring” operation). The “square” operation x2 and “square root” operation x1/2 = x are examples of inverse functions of one another. 3 3 3 y = x2 y= x –64 = ???) Graph this function together with y = x3. m = y2 − y1 Δy = Δx x2 − x1 for any two points (x1. etc. More precisely. i. b = +3).e. 0) on our line. 4). 4). (3. where b is the Y-intercept (in this example. As in the figure above.

Let’s first restrict our attention to positive 1 domain x-values.) A similar situation exists for negative domain x-values..4 • 1 y = f (x) = x−1 = x : This is a bit more delicate.. without ever actually touching it. Therefore. as x grows larger (e. x > 0. x = 0.⎟ become smaller. 1000.01‚ 1000 = 0.01 = 100‚ 0. then y becomes infinite (+∞).. x = 10. 100. so x = 0 is not in the domain of this function.‚ 0. as we ⎝ ⎠ continue to move to the left. the values of the 1 1 1 1 ⎛ ⎞ height y = x ⎜e. i. although they ⎝ ⎠ never actually reach 0. 0.1 = 10‚ 0.).001. 0.. (1. x < 0.1‚ 100 = 0. the graph approaches the X-axis as a horizontal asymptote.01. the values of the height 1 ⎛ 1 1 1 ⎞ y = x ⎜e. which is undefined as a real number. 1) lies on the graph of this function.e.g.g. the graph shoots upwards. 1) 1 Exercise: How does this graph differ from that of y = f (x) = x−2 = x2 ? Why? . etc.g. Moreover. so the point (1. then y = f (1) = 1 = 1. i.001 = 1000‚ etc. This is the graph of a hyperbola. Therefore. etc. which has two symmetric branches.‚ 10 = 0. as we continue to move to the right.1. Now from here. without ever actually touching it.e. one in the first quadrant and the other in the third.001‚ etc.⎟ become larger. (If x = 0. as x gets smaller from the point (1.). If x = 1.g. approaching the Y-axis as a vertical asymptote. 1) on the graph (e.

(Think of switching a light from off = 0 to on = 1. if x ≤ 1 if x > 1 This graph is the parabola y = x2 up to and including the point (1. then picks up with the curve y = x3 after that.” at x = 1. such as the parabola y = x2. if x ≤ 1 if x > 1. Therefore. f (x) = x3 . the graph is the straight line y = x. then the graph is concave down. if p < 0. x2. this graph has a break. and hence for all real values of x.5 NOTE: The preceding examples are special cases of power functions. then the graph starts at the origin and continues to rise to infinity. g is described as being piecewise continuous. If p = 1. If p > 0. (In particular. then the Y-axis acts as a vertical asymptote for the graph.) However. but then abruptly changes over to the curve y = x3 + 5 after that.) However. for x > 0. This graph is the parabola y = x2 up to and including the point (1. Note that this function is therefore continuous at x = 1. and the X-axis is a horizontal asymptote. since it is continuous before and after that value. Exercise: Sketch the graph of the piecewise-defined functions x2. or “jump discontinuity. for any real value of p. such as y = x−1 = x . such as 1 1 the parabola y = x1/2 = x . or y = x−2 = x2 . then the graph is concave up. if p > 1. g (x) = x3 + 5. . which have the general form y = x p. 6). y = xp p>1 p=1 0<p<1 p=0 p<0 Exercise: Why is y = xx not a power function? Sketch its graph for x > 0. 1). 1). starting at (1. And if 0 < p < 1.

fossils.) The graphs of y = ex and y = ln(x) show the typical symmetry with respect to the line y = x of inverse functions. • The choice of base b = 10 results in the so-called common logarithm “log10(x).2.6931 x.4)1 = 37.. then the resulting graph represents an exponential decay curve. for a given base b. For example.6931 = 2.4(37. y = f(x) = ex.” usually denoted “ln(x). For example. how do we get a? The inverse of the exponential function y = bx is.) If the exponent is changed from x to −x. b = 1/2). Exercise: How do the graphs of the functions (1/2)x and 2 –x compare.015625 102 = 100. ln(2) = 0.71828… .6 • y = f (x) = 2x: This is not a power function! The graph of this increasing function is an exponential growth curve.) NOTE: For general exponential functions y = f(x) = bx. (98. so a = 0. 2x can be written e 0. and decreases if b < 1 (e.. Logarithms satisfy many properties that make them extremely useful for manipulating complex algebraic expressions. denoted exp(x). which doubles in height y with every “unit increase” (i. carbon dating of prehistoric artifacts. (9)1/2 = 9 = 3. the “logarithm of x” is equal to the exponent to which the base b must be raised.g. (Think of “half-life” of a radioactive isotope. the base b can be any positive constant. resulting in the natural logarithm “loge(x). 2–6 = 26 = 0. by definition. But given b. respectively: 1 1 (37. b = 2 in the previous example).g. it follows that eln(x) = x and ln(ex) = x. among other things… y = ex y = ln(x) . the statements in the following line are equivalent to those in the line below it. with constant a > 0 (growth) or a < 0 (decay).2) = –1.6931. 1707-1783. + 1) in x. log10(100) = 2.. log5(0. The resulting function.6(1) = 0.71828…. log37. (For example.g. is sometimes considered as “THE” exponential function.4. Other exponential functions y = f(x) = bx can be equivalently expressed as y = f(x) = eax (via b = ea).” But for calculus applications. The resulting graph increases if b > 1 (e. etc. and why? One very important special choice for calculus applications is called e = 2. the preferred base is “Euler’s constant” e = 2.” And because it is the inverse of the exponential function ex.6931 because e0.015625) = –6.6)0 = 1.e. in order to obtain the value x. (Think of a population of bacteria that doubles its size ever hour. That is. e. 5–1 = 51 = 0. decreasing by a constant factor of one-half from left to right. see figure. the logarithm function y = logb(x). labeled for Swiss mathematician Leonhard Euler (pronounced “oiler”). log9(3) = 1/2.. log2(0. log98.4) = 1.

9). 1 We can’t actually reach 0 exactly. 9).25) on the graph.1 . Now suppose that we slide to a new them. then msec = 7 . if Δx = 0.) As Q approaches P – i.5 − 3 9.) In this context. the slope of the new secant line between P and Q. Leibniz ~ 1680 lim x→+∞ 1 x = 0. The average rate of change is now msec = Δx 12. (The same thing also happens if we approach P from the left side.1. if Δx = 0. Many other limits are possible. A mathematically concise way to express this is a “limit statement”: Newton. 9) – thus measuring the instantaneous rate of change of this function at this point P(3.1.e.61 − 9 Δy Q(3. as Δx approaches 0 – this quantity msec = 6 + Δx approaches the quantity mtan = 6 as its limiting value. but we can “sneak up” on it. we say that 0 is a limiting value of the x values. If we now slide to a new point 3. To motivate this.) We can actually verify this by an explicit computation: From fixed point P(3. 12.25 − 9 = 6.5. then msec = 6. closer to P(3. confirming what we initially suspected.5. (For instance. we can force 1/x < 10−500 by making 1 x > 10500.7 4. Δx 3.. 9. consider again the parabola example y = f (x) = x2. and so on. then msec = 6. we have msec = Δx Δx 9 + 6 Δx + (Δx)2 − 9 6 Δx + (Δx)2 Δx ⋅ (6 + Δx) = = = 6 + Δx.1 − 3 As Q approaches P.1. 16) on the graph can be calculated as the slope of the secant line connecting 16 − 9 Δy = = 7. Limits and Derivatives 1 We saw above that as the values of x grow ever larger. as x gets arbitrarily large. forcing x to become as close to 0 as we like. the slopes msec of the secant lines appear to get ever closer to 6 – the slope mtan of the tangent line to the curve y = x2 at the point P(3. but we now wish to consider a special kind. via the previous formula: msec = Δx 4−3 Δy = point Q(3. 9). (3 + Δx) ) on the graph of y = x . 9) to (3 + Δx)2 − 9 Δy 2 2 = = any nearby point Q(3 + Δx. the values of x become ever smaller. Y Q secant lines tangent line P X . The average rate of change between the two points P(3. 9) and Q(4. then the new slope is msec = = = 6. (We can check this formula against Δx Δx Δx the msec values that we already computed: if Δx = 1.5.5 .61) still closer to P(3. simply by making x large enough.

To find the instantaneous rate of change at an arbitrary point P on its graph. We can use the same calculation as we did above: the average rate of change of y = x2 between any two generic points P(x.” thereby defining the instantaneous rate of change of the function at the point P. mtan = 0 X In principle. 9).e. the instantaneous rate of change of the function y = f (x) = x2 at the point P(4. 0). at P(−5. dx [f (x)]. as Δx approaches its graph. 4). mtan = 6 P(−2. 16) is equal to mtan = 8. This can also be written more succinctly as dx = 2x. is given by msec = = = Δx Δx Δx 2 Δx ⋅ (2x + Δx) 2x Δx + (Δx) = = 2x + Δx. 16) or P(−5. as Δx approaches 0 – this = Δx Δx quantity approaches mtan = 2x “in the limit. i. and is also symbolized by several other interchangeable notations: d f(x) d dx . the derivative of the function y = f (x) = x2 is equal to the function d (x2) dy d = f ′(x) = 2x. . dx (x2) = 2x.”) The process of calculating the derivative of a function is called differentiation. Y P(−5. and at the origin P(0. or dy = 2x dx. As Q approaches P – i. As Q approaches P – i. which can be used to estimate a small output difference Δy in terms of a small input difference Δx. (The last is sometimes referred to as “prime notation. these calculations agree with those previously done for msec and mtan . 16). Thus. mtan = −10 P(4.. f ′(x). etc. defined by: mtan = lim Δx → 0 Δy = Δx lim Δx → 0 f(x + Δx) − f(x) Δx dy This object – denoted compactly by dx – is called the derivative of the function y = f(x) . as measured by msec = Δx Δx 0 from both sides – this quantity becomes the instantaneous rate of change at P.e. 0) is mtan = 0.. (x + Δx)2) on its graph. dx The last form expresses the so-called differential dy in terms of the differential dx. we first calculate the average rate of change between P(x. f(x + Δx)) on Δy f(x + Δx) − f(x) = . 25) or even P(0. say at P(4. there is nothing that prevents us from applying these same ideas to other functions y = f(x). 25). x2) and (x + Δx)2 − x2 x2 + 2x Δx + (Δx)2 − x2 Δy Q(x + Δx. mtan = −4 P(0. 25) is mtan = −10.8 Suppose now we wish to find the instantaneous rate of change of y = f(x) = x2 at some other point P on the graph. (Note that if x = 3. mtan = 8 P(3.) Thus.. Δy ≈ 2x Δx. 0). f(x)) and a nearby point Q(x + Δx.e. for example.

a uniquely defined tangent line does not exist at the “corner. if y = f(x) = e ..e. we have the following result. 0). as it should! (The line y = x has slope m = 1 everywhere. then dx = 2x ln(2) = 2x (0. (However. Namely. and The average rate of change (i. the last function is undefined at the origin. Exponential Rule d x d ax x ax dx (b ) = b ln(b) – or equivalently – dx (e ) = a e . dx (x ) = p x dy dy 1 dy Examples: If y = x3. it is possible to prove that such a general rule exists for dy any power function x p. • Finally.e. x1/3.” However. i. Also dy note that if y = x = x1. a = 1).. the derivative of ex is equal to just ex itself! This explains why base e is a particularly desirable special case. then dx = f ′(x) = a e . dy If y = f(x) = C (any constant) for all x‚ then the derivative dx = f ′(x) = 0 for all x. we have for x > 0. If y = 10x.3026). Although the first two are continuous through the origin (0. exploiting the fact that exponentials and logarithms are inverses functions. In the same way. if y = f(x) = x p. then dx = − x−2. it can be proved that if y = f(x) = bx. slope) between any two points on this graph is Δx Δx hence the instantaneous rate of change = 0 as well. x = 0 is not even in its domain. dy dy Examples: If y = 2x. for any positive base b. so any talk of a tangent line there is completely meaningless. has an infinite – or undefined – slope. Power Rule d p p− 1 . i. and x−1 are not differentiable at x = 0. if b = e (or equivalently.. In other words. the functions y = f(x) = |x|. whose graph is a horizontal line. then dx = 2 ex/2. not just p = 2.) • Again using the preceding “limit definition” of a derivative. Hence. then dx = 2 x−1/2. i. dx One last important example is worth making explicit: let y = f(x) = 7. the constant multiple is just 1. having equation x = C. all for different reasons. Equivalently.9 • Using methods very similar to those above. the derivative of the function bx is equal to the product of bx times a constant factor of ln(b) that “hangs along for the ride. then dy the derivative of y = ex is simply dx = ex (1) = ex..e.” The second graph has a vertical tangent line there. If y = x1/2. then dx = 1 x0 = 1. then dx = 10x ln(10) = 10x (2. If y = e−x.e. then d x dy dy x x ax ax dx = f ′(x) = b ln(b). 7−7 Δy = = 0. But. dy 1 dy More examples: If y = ex/2. the first has a V-shaped graph. then dx = 3 x2. many complex functions are indeed differentiable… .6931). Logarithm Rule • 1 1 1 d d [logb(x)] = x ln(b) ⇒ Special case (b = e): dx [ln(x)] = x . then dx = f ′(x) = p x p−1. If y = x−1. And as we’ve seen. observe that a vertical line.) Not every function has a derivative everywhere! For example. dx (b ) = b ln(b). hence the slope is infinite. then dx = (−1) e−x = −e−x.

not just x itself (or a constant multiple ax)! 1 dy Example: If y = ln(7x10 + 8x6 – 4x + 11). d df dx [c f(x)] = c dx [c f(x)]′ = c f ′(x) dy Example: If y = 5 x3. 2. then dx = e−x²/2 (− 2 ) = −x e−x²/2. 4. then dx = 5 (3 x2) = 15 x2. and any differentiable function f(x). dy 2x Example: If y = e−x²/2. Quotient Rule f(x) [ g(x) ] ′ = f ′(x) g(x) − f (x) g ′(x) provided g(x) ≠ 0 [g (x)]2 e4x (4x7 − 7x6 + 32) e4x dy (x7 + 8) 4e4x − (7x6) e4x = . then dx = (11 x10)(e6x) + (x11)(6 e6x) = (11 + 6x) x10 e6x. Note that you cannot calculate its derivative by the “exponential rule” given above. then dx = 6 (x2/3 + 2e−9x)5 ( 3 x−1/3 − 18e−9x). For any two differentiable functions f(x) and g(x). The graph of this function is related to the “bell curve” of probability and statistics. 5. . Example: If y = x3/2 − 7 x4 + 10 e −3x − 5.10 Properties of Derivatives 1. then dy 3 1/2 3 −3x dx = 2 x − 28 x − 30 e . then dx = 7x10 + 8x6 – 4x + 11 (70x9 + 48x5 – 4). then dx = (x7 + 8)2 (x7 + 8)2 NOTE: See below for a more detailed explanation. 1 1 dy 1 Example: If y = 9 x. Chain Rule [ f ( g(x) )] ′ = f ′( g(x) ) × g ′(x) dy 2 Example: If y = (x2/3 + 2e−9x)6. dy Example: If y = −3 e 2x. Sum and Difference Rules d df dg dx [ f(x) ± g(x) ] = dx ± dx [ f(x) ± g(x) ] ′ = f ′(x) ± g ′(x) 3. Product Rule [ f(x) g(x) ] ′ = f ′(x) g(x) + f(x) g ′(x) dy Example: If y = x11 e6x. Example: If y = x7 + 8 . then dx = −3 (2 e 2x) = −6 e 2x. then dx = 9 (1) = 9 . because the exponent is a function of x. For any constant c.

= = . The function in the first example above can be viewed as composing the “outer” function f(u) = u6. then dx = u dx .) . then dx = p u p− 1 dx . As it is. which makes calculations easier in some contexts. bears some further explanation. as the time interval shrinks to 0 “in the limit. as the last three examples illustrate. for ΔC 20 1 auxiliary function.) The idea behind the Chain Rule is that what is true for average rates of change also holds for instantaneous rates of change. but A does not know how fast C is traveling. respectively: dy du If y = u p. three times as much. B acts an intermediate link in the chain. Similarly. Exercise: Recall from page 5 that y = xx is not a power function. B travels at a rate of 40 mph. dy du If y = e u. In addition. 1 du dy If y = ln(u). derivatives. That is. And the last case can be seen as composing the outer logarithm function f(u) = ln(u) with the inner polynomial function u = g(x) = 7x10 + 8x6 – 4x + 11. a function of a function y = f ( g(x) ). (Not covered here. Over this time span. d(u p) = p u p− 1 du.11 The Chain Rule. (Of course. recall. is ΔB 40 2 ΔB 40 2 equal to the ratio = = . this ΔC ΔB ΔC ΔA 60 3 = = . or an would not be necessary. relative to B. Therefore. three-halves as much.” i. or 2 × 1 = 1. an alternate – perhaps more illuminating – equivalent way to write the Chain Rule dy dy du is dx = du ⋅ dx which. the function in the second example can be viewed as composing the outer exponential function f(u) = eu (whose derivative.. d[ln(u)] = u du. is itself). ΔA 60 3 i. It is a rule for differentiating a composition of two functions f and g. with the “inner” function u = g(x) = x2/3 + 2e−9x. then multiply that by the derivative of the inner. Obtain its derivative via the technique of implicit (in particular. first take the derivative of the outer function (6u5. dy Hence. then dx = e u dx . specialize to a General Power Rule. which can be written several different ways. The logic behind the Chain Rule is actually quite simple and intuitive (though a formal proof involves certain technicalities that we do not pursue here). twice as much. and we get our answer. with the inner power function u = g(x) = −x2/2.. if y = f(u)‚ and u = g(x)‚ then dx = f ′(u) g ′(x) is another way to express this procedure. logarithmic) differentiation. Imagine three cars traveling at different rates of speed over a given time interval: A travels at a rate of 60 mph. suppose that A knows how fast B is traveling. can be obtained by multiplying together these two quantities. That is. d(e u) = e u du. the average rate of change of B. With this insight. is equal to the ratio of their respective distances traveled.e. the average rate of change of A. 1 That is. and General Logarithm Rule for differentiation. via the elementary algebraic identity 3 2 3 ΔA ΔA ΔB = × . that is. the average rate of change of A. General Exponential Rule. by the Power Rule given above). and B knows how fast C is traveling. if A has direct knowledge of C. To find its derivative. relative to C.e. and C travels at a rate of 20 mph. Similarly. relative to ΔC 20 1 C.

x2. we generate the sequence x1 = 2. 2! = 2 × 1 = 2. at Δy dy least informally. In the popular Newton-Raphson Method.) Exercise: Try different initial values. NOTE: A better estimate of the difference Δy = f(x + Δx) – f(x) can be obtained by adding information from the second derivative f ′′(x) (= derivative of f ′(x)). it follows that msec ≈ mtan. .. 3. 4. 5. Roots and Maxima & Minima. and in general “n factorial” is defined as n! = n × (n – 1) × (n – 2) × … × 1)..e.4 × 10–5. 7.e. Exercise: Compare this with the exact value of Δy = f(1. i. x3.”) Example: Solve for x: f(x) = x3 – 21 x2 + 135 x – 220 = 0. to the previous formula: 1 1 1 1 Δy ≈ 1! f ′(x) Δx + 2! f ′′(x) (Δx)2 + 3! f ′′′(x) (Δx)3 + … + n! f (n)(x) (Δx)n (where 1! = 1. the small difference from 0 is due to roundoff error. x0 = 0. Example: Let y = f(x) = (x2 – 2 x + 2) ex. by iterating the expression x – .461290. i. Related Rates As seen.03). Explain the different behaviors. 1. the third derivative f ′′′(x).g. Suppose we wish to solve for the roots of the equation f(x) = 0.. or Δy ≈ f ′(x) Δx . x3 = 2. Starting with iterate the formula x – 3 x2 – 42 x + 135 f′ (x) x0 = 2. The formal mathematical statement of equality between Δy and the sum of higher derivatives of f is an extremely useful result known as Taylor’s Formula. we start with an initial guess x0. (Check: f(2. when x = 1 and Δx = 0. then produce a sequence of values x0. by continuity. can be estimated by Δy ≈ f ′(x) Δx = (x2 ex) Δx. so we often turn to numerical techniques which yield computer-generated approximations.12 5. x4 = 2. 6. (Iteration is the simple process of repeatedly f′ (x) applying the same formula to itself. we have ≈ = f ′(x).03 e = 0.… that converges to a numerical f(x) solution. and f(3) = +23 > 0.461941. f(1) to f(1. Applying Newton’s Method. the values where the graph of f(x) intersects the X-axis (also called the zeros of the function f(x)). 3! = 3 × 2 × 1 = 6. The change in function value from say. this can be extremely tedious or even impossible. etc. thereafter.461941. to four decimal places. as in a continual “feedback loop. x2 = 2. this cubic (degree 3) polynomial must have a zero somewhere between 2 and 3. Δy ≈ 0. That is..03) – f(1). Applications: Estimation. for nearby points P and Q on the graph of a function f(x). Algebraically.461941) = 1. Δx dx Hence the first derivative f ′(x) can be used in a crude local estimate of the amount of change Δy of the function y = f(x). We note that f(2) = –26 < 0. for a small change Δx.03. e.461941.0815. we x3 – 21 x2 + 135 x – 220 2 x3 – 21 x2 + 220 f(x) = x– = 3 x2 – 42 x + 135 . the iterates remain fixed at this value 2. Hence. x1.412698.

. and solve the resulting algebraic equation for the critical values of f. the function f(x) rises. as we move from left to right in a local neighborhood of x = 5. which indicates that the original function f is increasing at x = 4. a numerical approximation technique is not necessary. local extrema). Furthermore. We calculate that: mtan(4) = f ′(4) = +15 > 0. We have f ′(x) = 3 x2 – 42 x + 135 = 0. We can use the quadratic formula to solve this explicitly. in order to find such relative extrema (i. First Derivative Test Second Derivative Test In either case. it follows that the corresponding critical points on the graph of f(x) are (5. Hence.. resulting in a much smaller error. say x = 4 and x = 6. Hence there are two critical values. then falls. slope mtan = f ′(x) = 0.e. conclude that the point (9. This indicates that the point (5.e. Algebraically formalizing this process results in the general formula given above..e.e. local minimum) at some value of x. If a function f(x) has either a relative maximum (i. the tangent line at P0 will then intersect the X-axis at a value much closer to the root. it can be shown that the small error (between each value and the true solution) in each iteration is approximately squared in the next iteration. perhaps using a numerical approximation technique like Newton’s Method described above. or simply observe that. via factoring. This suggests that. local maximum) or a relative minimum (i. x = 5 and x = 9. (But beware: Not all critical values necessarily correspond to relative extrema! More on this later…) Example (cont’d): Find and classify the critical points of y = f(x) = x3 – 21 x2 + 135 x – 220. where f ′ = 0. the “Second Derivative Test. Exercise: Show that: (1) f ′(8) < 0. 23) is a relative minimum for f. which indicates that f is neither increasing nor decreasing at x = 5. i. Let us now evaluate the derivative f ′(x) at two nearby values that bracket x = 5 on the left and right. whose x-coordinate x0 is reasonably close to a root. consistent with the above.13 Notice the extremely rapid convergence to the root.” we evaluate f ′′(x) = 6 x – 42 at the critical value x = 5. 55) is a relative maximum for f. In fact. As this is a quadratic (degree 2) polynomial equation. 3 x2 – 42 x + 135 = 3 (x – 5)(x – 9) = 0. which indicates that the original function f is concave down (“spills”) at this value. Once obtained. which indicates that the original function f is decreasing at x = 6. This value x1 can then be used as the x-coordinate of a new point P1 on the graph. and the cycle repeated until some predetermined error tolerance is reached. . 55) and (9. Generally speaking. 55) is a relative maximum for f. Consider the first critical value. x = 5. mtan(6) = f ′(6) = –9 < 0. f ′′(5) = –12 < 0. this also shows that the point (5. i. we set the derivative f ′(x) equal to zero.. levels off. and if f(x) is differentiable there. since f(5) = 55 and f(9) = 23. it is necessary to determine the exact nature of these critical points. In an alternate method. then its tangent line must be horizontal. Why does it work at all? Suppose P0 is a point on the graph of f(x). f ′(10) > 0 (2) f ′′(9) > 0. and demonstrates an application of the “First Derivative Test” for determining the nature of critical points.. 23). mtan(5) = f ′(5) = 0. Hence. This feature of quadratic convergence is a main reason why this is a favorite method.e.

the function attains its global maximum and minimum values of 55 (at x = 5) and 23 (at x = 9). respectively.14 Finally. Similarly. i. However. and a relative minimum (i.. attained at the right endpoint x = 12. which indicates that the original function f is concave up (“holds”) at x = 8... f increases f concave down f decreases f increases f concave up (5.. (Why?) Therefore. if x ≤ 3. in the interval [0. Hence. compact). then both absolute extrema are attained. the global minimum of the function is equal to –220. 12]. this function has a relative maximum (i. The full graph of f(x) = x3 – 21 x2 + 135 x – 220 is shown below. 23) (2.e.461941. global minimum) value. this function has no absolute maximum (i. there are both higher and lower points on the graph! For example. in the interval [4. which indicates that f is neither concave down nor concave up at x = 7. f ′′(7) = 0. 12].e.e. However. This indicates that (7. if x ≥ 11. which indicates that the original function f is concave down (“spills”) at x = 6. notice that f ′′(x) = 6 x – 42 = 0 when x = 7. 39) (9. in the interval [4. the relative extreme points are also the absolute extreme points. global maximum) value. For instance.e. 39) is a point of inflection for f. attained at the left endpoint x = 0. then f(x) ≤ 23. f ′′(8) = +6 > 0. the global maximum of the function is equal to 104.e. . likewise. then f(x) ≥ 55. if we restrict the domain to an interval that is “closed and bounded” (i. local maximum) value = 55 at x = 5. and in a local neighborhood of that value.. local minimum) value = 23 at x = 7. 10]. there is change in concavity of the function f(x). 55) (7. 0) As we have shown. using all of this information. and no absolute minimum (i. across x = 7. But clearly.e. f ′′(6) = –6 < 0.

x]. yielding the equation dV 2 dr dt = 4 π r dt . Integrals and Antiderivatives Suppose we have a general function y = f(x).e. from some fixed lower value a. the “time derivative” of a functional relation between two or more variables results in a type of differential equation that relates their rates.. it has no breaks or jumps). But as V and r are functions of time. for simplicity. That is. We wish to find the area under the graph of f.e. in an interval [a. Observant readers will note that the two equations are mathematically equivalent dV dV dr via the Chain Rule. formally show that it is a relative minimum of the latter. f(x) ≥ 0) and continuous (i. 6. as shown below. let’s assume that the function is nonnegative (i. we can relate both their rates directly. since dt = dr dt . f(x) = x3 – 21 x2 + 135 x – 243 f(x) = x3 – 21 x2 + 135 x – 265 f(x) = x3 – 21 x2 + 147 x – 265 Exercise: The origin (0.15 Exercise: Graph each of the following. by differentiating the original relation with respect to the time variable t. y = f (x) f (z) F(x + Δx) − F(x) F(x) a x z x + Δx X . but the second form illustrates a simple application of a general technique called related rates. (Why?) Using the tests above. dV Hence. 0) is a critical point for both f(x) = x3 and f(x) = x4. the derivative dr = 4 π r2 naturally expresses the instantaneous rate of change of V with respect to r.. Graph both of these functions. 4 The volume V of a spherical cell is functionally related to its radius r via the formula V = 3 π r3. informally. to any variable upper value x. but a point of inflection of the former.

we formally express… x F(x) = ⌠ f(t) dt . F′ (x) = f(x) . and take the difference of these two areas (highlighted above in green): F(x + Δx) − F(x) = Area under the graph of f in the interval [x. previously given) and. because every value of x results in one and only one area (shown highlighted above in blue). i. f is called the integrand. ⌡ a (In this context. F must also have a strong connection with f itself.) More generally. Clearly. Example 1: F(x) = 10 x10 + C (where C is any constant) is the general antiderivative of f(x) = x9. We can write this relation succinctly as ⌠x9 dx = 10 x10 + C. noting that z → x as Δx → 0. Δx Now take the limit of both sides as Δx → 0.e. x + Δx] = Area of the rectangle with height f(z) and width Δx (where z is some value in the interval [x. this is a function of x. Hence. where C is an arbitrary ⌡ constant. x + Δx]) = f(z) Δx. we have F(x + Δx) − F(x) = f(z). F(x + Δx) = Area under the graph of f in the interval [a. consider a nearby value x + Δx. Therefore. x Therefore. because F′ (x) = 10 (10x9) + 0 = x9 = f(x). then the two functions are related via the indefinite integral: ⌠f(x) dx = F(x) + C . F is an antiderivative of f. x]. ⌡ 1 1 1 .16 We formally define a new function F(x) = Area under the graph of f in the interval [a. To see what that connection must be. we see that the right hand side f(z) becomes (via continuity) f(x). if F is any antiderivative of f. ⌡ a where the right-hand side ⌠ f(t) dt represents the definite integral of the function f from a to x. Then. x + Δx]. by definition! Moreover.. We see that the left hand side becomes the derivative of F(x) (recall the definition of the derivative of a function.

Sum and Difference Rules ∫ [f(x) ± g(x)] dx = ∫ f(x) dx ± ∫ g(x) dx From the previous two examples. times the integral of the function f(x). ⌡ NOTE: Integrals possess the analogues of Properties 1 and 2 for derivatives. difference) of the integrals. ⌠u p ⌡ du = ln |u| + C. General Logarithm Rule. ⌠eu du = eu + C ⌡ if p ≠ −1 if p = −1 NOTE: In order to use these formulas correctly. is equal to that constant multiple c. Also. found on page 10. the integral of a sum (respectively. (1 ) Properties of Integrals 1. We can write this relation succinctly as ⌠e x/8 dx = 8 e x/8 + C.) These are extremely important properties for the applications that follow. For any constant c. the integral of a constant multiple of a function.17 Example 2: F(x) = 8 e x/8 + C (where C is any constant) is the general antiderivative of f(x) = e x/8. 2. not reviewed here. ∫ [c f(x)] dx = c ∫ f(x) dx For any two integrable functions f(x) and g(x). c f(x). and any integrable function f(x). du must be present in the integrand (up to a constant multiple). because F′ (x) = 8 8 e x/8 + 0 = e x/8 = f(x). In particular. it is evident that the differentiation rules for power and exponential functions can be inverted (essentially by taking the integral of both sides) to the General Power Rule. difference) of two functions is equal to the sum (respectively. (The integral analogue for products corresponds to a technique known as integration by parts. and General Exponential Rule for integration: u p+1 p + 1 + C. To illustrate… .

then du = 5x4 dx. carried out above. this integral is not expressible in terms of “elementary functions. provided we preserve the balance via multiplication by 1/3 on the outside of the integral sign). Again. so that du = 3x2 dx. if the x4 were absent. and perform the subsequent exponential integration. (To check the answer. which we can easily balance. which is precisely the other factor in the integrand. . x2 1 1 Example 5: ⌠1 + x3 dx = ⌠(1 + x3)−1 3x2 dx = 3 ln |1 + x3| + C. is to recognize that if we substitute u = x5 + 2.” Because it is related to the important “bell curve” of probability and statistics. it can be shown that without this factor of z. take the derivative of the right-hand function. then we would not have been able to carry out the integration exactly in the manner shown. And again. except for the constant multiple −1. ⎮ ⌡ 3 ⌡ ⌠ ⌡ u−1 du = ln |u| + C This is very similar to the previous example. In fact.(x5 + 2)10 Example 3: ⌠(x5 + 2)9 5x4 dx = + C. if u = −z2/2. revealing that this is again a “power rule” integral. then du = −z dz. not functions! 2 2 1 1 3 ⌠ x ⌠(1 + x3)−1/2 3x2 dx = × 2 (1 + x3) 1/2 + C = Example 4: ⎮ 3 dx = 3 ⌡ 3 1 + x + C. then we would not be able to carry out the integration in the manner shown. Don’t forget to use the Chain Rule!) Note that if the constant multiple 5 were absent from the original integrand. as is! Therefore. and integrate the resulting polynomial (of degree 49) term-by-term… Yuk. ⌡ 10 ⌠ ⌡ u9 du = u10 10 + C 18 There are two ways to solve this problem. (This procedure is demonstrated in the next example. Example 6: ⌠z e−z²/2 dz = −⌠e−z²/2 (−z) dz = − e−z²/2 + C. this is essentially just a “power rule” integration. or were replaced by any other function. let u = 1 + x3.) However. we would not be able to introduce and balance for it. we could introduce and compensate for it. Verify that the answer is correct via differentiation. if the x2 were missing from the integrand. as illustrated. ⌡ ⌡ ⌠ eu ⌡ du = eu + C In this example. the values of its corresponding definite integral are estimated and tabulated for general use. The first is to expand out the algebraic expression in the integrand. in terms of the variable u. The second way. except for the constant multiple of 3 (which we can introduce. since via Property 1 above. and verify that the original integrand is restored. except that it is a logarithmic. if the z were missing from the integrand. integral. we can only balance constant multiples. This is present in the original integrand. or were replaced by any other function. not a power. 3 ⌡ 1+x ⌠ ⌡ u−1/2 du = u+1/2 1/2 + C In this example. This is present in the integrand.

u2 du NOTE: Numerical integration techniques. Expand and integrate term-wise: ⌠x3 (1 − 2x4 + x8) dx = ⌠(x3 − 2x7 + x11) dx ⌡ ⌡ = [ x4 − 2x + x12 ] 8 4 8 12 1 0 = 1 1 [ 14 − 2 (1) + 112 ] − [ 04 − 2 (0) + 012 ] = 12 – 0 = 12 . and x3 is indeed present in the integrand. then du = −4x3 dx.) b ⌠f (x) dx ⌡ a 1 ⌠ Example 7: ⌡x3 (1 − x4)2 dx 0 This definite integral represents the amount of area under the curve f(x) = x3 (1 – x4)2. 1 − 4 1 ⌠ (1 − x ) (−4x ) dx = − ⌡ 4 4 2 3 x=1 x=0 u=1 1 1 u3 2 ⌠u du = 4 ⌠u du = 4 3 ⌡ ⌡ u=0 2 1 [ ] 1 0 0 1 13 03 = − 3 4 3 [ 1 ] = 12 . all these results can be summarized into one elegant statement. from x = 0 to x = 1. (Advanced techniques of integration ⌡ a – such as integration by parts. when x = 1. – will not be reviewed here. partial fractions. such as the Trapezoidal Rule. Recall that the x-limits of integration should also be converted to u-limits: when x = 0.19 Finally. the Fundamental Theorem b of Calculus for definite integrals: ⌠f (x) dx = F(b) − F(a) . 8 8 4 8 12 Method 2. we get u = 1 – 04 = 1. . Use the power function formula (if possible): If u = 1 – x4. are sometimes used also. etc. we get u = 1 − 14 = 0. 1 0 0 4 8 12 1 Method 1. trigonometric substitution.

. e. and solving gives y = e ax + C = e ax eC. but remains bounded as x gets large. This is known 0 0 as the logistic curve.. where a is a known constant of proportionality (either positive or negative). each function corresponds to a different value of C. the y0 e ax solution is given by y = y e ax + (1 – y ). where a > 0. and x on the right – we can rewrite this ordinary differential equation (or o. dx = x2. y = 3 x3 + 3. which initially resembles the exponential curve. such that the rate of change dx is dy proportional to the product y (1 – y).g. NOTE: Many types of differential equation exist.) as dy = x2 dx. Like integration above.e. either increasing for a > 0 (as in unrestricted population growth. 1 Separating variables produces y dy = a dx. such as y(2) = 5. such equations can be solved via Euler’s Method and other. Note that the “solution” therefore actually represents an entire family of functions. dy dx = a y. including those that cannot be explicitly solved using “elementary” techniques. more sophisticated. or y = A e ax. suppose we wish to find a function dy dy y = f(x) whose derivative dx is given. dx = a y (1 – y). integrating yields ln(y) = a x + C. y0) .20 7. With the initial condition y(0) = y0..e. Formally. in this case. where A is an arbitrary (positive) multiplicative constant. Hence this is a family of exponential curves. In this differential form. suppose that population size y = f(x) is restricted dy between 0 and 1.e. Further specifying an initial value (or initial condition). i. (2. where C is an arbitrary additive constant. numerical techniques. Now consider the case of finding a function y = f(x) dy whose rate of change dx is proportional to y itself. Differential Equations As a first example. y0) (0. Specifying an initial amount y(0) = y0 “when the clock starts at time zero” yields the unique solution y = y0 e ax. Finally. singles out exactly one of them passing 7 1 through the chosen point. by separation of variables – y on the left. i. illustrated) or decreasing for a < 0 (as in radioactive isotope decay). 5) (0.d. we can now integrate both sides 1 explicitly to obtain y = 3 x3 + C.

find the relative extrema of functions. . and expressed in terms of an indefinite integral: ⌡ f (x) dx = F(x) + C. quotients. As complex functions are built up from simpler ones by taking sums. formulas exist d du for computing their derivatives as well. or equivalently. if p ≠ −1 ⌡ ⌠u−1 ⌡ du = ln |u| + C ⌠e u du = eu + C ⌡ b General Power Rule General Logarithm Rule General Exponential Rule The corresponding definite integral ⌠ f(x) dx = F(b) − F(a) is commonly interpreted as the area ⌡ a under the graph of y = f(x) in the interval [a. surface area. we have: d p p − 1 du General Power Rule dx (u ) = p u dx du d (e u) = e u dx dx 1 du d [ln(u)] = u dx dx General Exponential Rule General Logarithm Rule Derivatives can be applied to estimate functions locally. dF A function f(x) has an antiderivative F(x) if its derivative dx = f(x). differences. Derivatives and integrals can be generally be used to analyze the dynamical behavior of complex systems. products. Other quantities that can be interpreted as definite integrals include volume. via the Chain Rule dx [f(u)] = f′ (u) dx . Numerical methods are often used when explicit solutions are intractable. Suggestions for improving this document? Send them to ifischer@wisc.21 8. f(x) dx = dF.edu. amount of work done over a path. is given by its dy derivative dx = f′ (x). and compositions. b]. via differential equations of various types. Summary of Main Points The instantaneous rate of change of a function y = f(x) at a value of x in its domain. for example. and many others. and relate rates of change of different but connected functions. In particular: ⌠ u p+1 ⌠u p du = p + 1 + C. probability. In particular. arc length. average value. and can be interpreted as the slope of the line tangent to the graph of y = f(x). though other interpretations do exist. This function is mathematically defined in terms of a particular “limiting value” of average rates of change over progressively smaller intervals (when that limit exists).

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