Register to reply 
Monotonic sequence help! 
Share this thread: 
#1
Nov1705, 02:38 PM

P: 99

Hi, I was asked to prove a sequence was monotonic but I'm not sure if my answer is right. Can someone please help me check and point out any errors? Thanks very much!



#2
Nov1705, 02:55 PM

Sci Advisor
HW Helper
P: 1,994

You find that
[tex]U_{n+1}U_n=\frac{1}{n(n+1)}[/tex] this is correct (though when you find [tex]U_{n+1}[/tex] in the first line, your substitution is wonky). Your next inequality, the [tex]\frac{1}{n(n+1)}\leq\frac{n1}{n}[/tex] while correct when n>1, does not help you show [tex]U_{n+1}\geq U_{n}[/tex]. To show this you just need to prove that [tex]U_{n+1}U_n\geq 0[/tex] which you've essentially got, right? 


#3
Nov1705, 03:06 PM

P: 99

Erm so basically Ive shown that [tex]U_{n+1}U_n\geq 0[/tex]? So would it be best to take out the part [tex]\frac{1}{n(n+1)}\leq\frac{n1}{n}[/tex] since like you said, it only proves true for when n > 1. And see [tex]U_{n+1}\geq U_{n}[/tex], is that not monotonic increasing? 


#4
Nov1705, 03:44 PM

Sci Advisor
HW Helper
P: 1,994

Monotonic sequence help!
[tex]U_{n+1}U_n=\frac{1}{n(n+1)}[/tex]?? [tex]U_{n+1}U_n[/tex] from below by 0, an upper bound for it won't help. 


#5
Nov1705, 03:52 PM

P: 99

Oh if that's monotonic increasing...does that mean I've made a mistake in my last statement? I wrote it was monotonic decreasing... 


#6
Nov1705, 03:59 PM

Sci Advisor
HW Helper
P: 1,994

By the way, you could also write: [tex]U_n=1\frac{1}{n}[/tex] and increasing should be more immediate, though finding [tex]U_{n+1}U_n[/tex] explictly like you've done is good too! 


#7
Nov1705, 04:43 PM

P: 99

Is it okay if I ask a few more questions? I've to decide whether the following are bounded above, below or both (bounded). And to also state the supremum and infimum. I tried the first question out of the three but I'm stuck and dunno how to continue http://tinypic.com/fubdd3.jpg For questions 2 and 3, am I suppose to treat the terms in it separately and then combine them at the end? Question 2 for example, Un = (1)^n I think is bounded by 1 and 1. And then for (11/n), by writing down the nxt few terms in the sequence I get: { 0, 1/2, 2/3 ... } so its bounded between 0 and 1? 


#8
Nov1705, 05:07 PM

Sci Advisor
HW Helper
P: 1,994

I'm happy to help.
In all of those questions it's a good idea to write out the first few terms. You can then try to guess at bounds and sup, inf, then try to prove analytically that your guess is correct. Try this for #1. For #2, you are correct that (1)^n is bounded below by 1 and above 1 (it's just alternating between these two values) and that 11/n is bounded below by 0 and above by 1 (though 0 is not the first term in the sequence and you can actually get a sharper lower bound). Can you combine these bounds to get bounds for [tex]U_n[/tex]? Again, you might want to write out the first few terms of [tex]U_n[/tex], not just the 'pieces' of it. It might also be a good idea to plot these points on a number line. Ditto for #3. 


#9
Nov1705, 05:32 PM

P: 99

hmm okay ive tried writing the terms for the first question but I don't think I'm doing it right...
Oh well here goes: { 99, 26, 32.3, 26, 19... } 


#10
Nov1705, 06:43 PM

Sci Advisor
HW Helper
P: 1,994

Almost...{99, 51, 32.333..., 26, 19, ...}
Now this isn't enough to give a lower bound for this one, but can you guess an upper bound? How about a supremum? For the lower bound, you're either going to need more terms or do something else to examine the long term behavior of this guy. I'd suggest doing something else. When n is large the 100/n term is very small, so what are the [tex]U_n[/tex] terms close to? 


#11
Nov1705, 06:59 PM

P: 99

hmm I'm guessing the supremum is 99 and the infimum is 0?



#12
Nov1705, 07:03 PM

Sci Advisor
HW Helper
P: 1,994

Good on the supremum, but why 0 for the infimum? What if n=100000001?



#13
Nov1705, 07:17 PM

P: 99

hmm but is it not getting closer and closer to 0? Actualli I've noticed if n = 100000001 then Un = 0.000....999 and then if n gets larger than 100000001 it still remains the same answer....
EDITED  Oh wait I think my observation on the decimal digits are wrong....it gets closer and closer to zero does it not? 


#14
Nov1705, 07:22 PM

Sci Advisor
HW Helper
P: 1,994

[tex]U_{10000001}=\frac{100}{10000001}+(1)^{10000001}[/tex] 


#15
Nov1705, 07:27 PM

P: 99

ohhh....its 0.9999 oops....
hmm okay...since n can be really really large, can it be possible that infimum doesnt exist? Can it be infinity? 


#16
Nov1705, 07:31 PM

Sci Advisor
HW Helper
P: 1,994




#17
Nov1705, 07:36 PM

P: 99

ahh okies I'll think about it....but now I need to go to sleep. It's 2.30 am still got college tomorrow.
Thanks very much for your help! And of course your patience coz even to myself I feel utterly dumb.... THANKS!!! 


Register to reply 
Related Discussions  
How to determine if a sequence is Inc, Dec, or not monotonic? Aso if its bounded?  Calculus & Beyond Homework  7  
Proving a monotonic sequence is unbounded  Calculus  4  
Monotonic bounded sequence theorem  Calculus  2  
Monotonic polynomial  Calculus  15  
Monotonic Sequence Theorem Question  Introductory Physics Homework  2 