In This Chapter
Integrating — adding it all up
Approximating areas and sizing up sigma sums
Using the definite integral to get exact areas
Totaling up trapezoids
Simpson’s rule: Calculus for Bart and Homer
Since you’re still reading this book, I presume that means you survived differentiation (Chapters 9 through 13). Now you begin the second major topic in calculus: integration. Just as two simple ideas lie at the heart of differentiation — rate (like miles per hour) and the steepness or slope of a curve — integration can also be understood in terms of two simple ideas — adding up small pieces of something and the area under a curve. In this chapter, I introduce you to these two fundamental concepts.
Consider the lamp on the left in Figure 14-1. Say you want to determine the volume of the lamp’s base. Why would you want to do that? Beats me. Anyway, a formula for the volume of such a weird shape ...