CHAPTER 7

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Derivatives. One and Several Variables

Derivatives

MATLAB implements a special set of commands enabling you to work with derivatives, which is particularly important in the world of computing and its applications. The derivative of a real function at a point measures the instantaneous rate of change of that function in a neighborhood of the point; i.e. how the dependent variable changes as a result of a small change in the independent variable. Geometrically, the derivative of a function at a point is the slope of the tangent to the function at that point. The origin of the idea derived from the attempt to draw the tangent line at a ...

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