Calculus symbols


by The riddler
Tags: calculus, symbols
The riddler
The riddler is offline
#1
Jul1-09, 03:14 PM
P: 94
1. Hi, im learning calculus off the interenet so that i may learn more advanced physics equations, but sadly im being held back because i cannot find the meaning of the symbols without the explaination being based around some seemingly random equation like
∫ab x2 dx = b3/3 − a3/3 + blah blah Blah. So below im gonna post a few symbols that i want to learn and i don't understand, also can someone to explain to me on this youtube
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EX_is9LzFSY what this guy is talking about in from 1:42 too 4:40. Please post the meaning of whichever one you can and thank you in advance .




2. ∫


Phys.Org News Partner Science news on Phys.org
Simplicity is key to co-operative robots
Chemical vapor deposition used to grow atomic layer materials on top of each other
Earliest ancestor of land herbivores discovered
jgens
jgens is offline
#2
Jul1-09, 04:37 PM
P: 1,623
Well, we can certainly explain what each of these symbols mean but unless you have the requisite mathematical knowledge, it won't help you very much. I would recommend getting a good calculus book to learn these things - if you want to do advanced physics, you need to know calculus very well.

∫ is called the integral sign and there are a lot of ways to define it. Perhaps the most common way is by Riemann or Darboux sums (the latter are easier to understand). You can find a fairly superficial treatment of the concept here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Integral

∇ is called the del operator (it's a differential opperator). However, I you haven't encountered integrals before, you probably shouldn't be working with the del operator. If you're really inclined a definition is given here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Del

From the video, it sounds like you're having difficulty with the limit concept. Intuitively, the limit of a function as x -> a is the value that the function approaches for x arbitrarily near a. For example, if f(x) = x/x, f(0) is undefined while lim (x -> 0) f(x) = 1.

It sounds like you really do need to get a good calculus book and learn these things. It won't do you much good to only get a superficial understanding of the concepts, especially if you want to pursue upper level physics.
The riddler
The riddler is offline
#3
Jul1-09, 05:02 PM
P: 94
Yeah your probably right, when i first saw calculus i tried to relate it to the algebra i've learned but Calculus seems to have something to it that seems quite alien to me that i have not come across it before. Thanks jgens.

queenofbabes
queenofbabes is offline
#4
Jul1-09, 09:42 PM
P: 211

Calculus symbols


Yes, I think you need a good calculus book for beginners, starting with differentiation and integration. If you're seeing del operators in the same place it's probably too difficult for you....for now.


Register to reply

Related Discussions
Help about the symbols Quantum Physics 6
symbols, such as alpha etc. into your posts Forum Feedback & Announcements 8
Tex symbols Computing & Technology 1
functions using mathematical jargon? Calculus 3
More symbols? Forum Feedback & Announcements 3