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In mathematics, the range of a function refers to either the codomain or the image of the function, depending upon usage. This ambiguity is illustrated by the function f that maps real numbers to real numbers with f(x) = x2. Some books say that range of this function is its codomain, the set of all real numbers, reflecting that the function is real-valued. These books call the actual output of the function the image. This is the current usage for range in computer science. Other books say that the range is the function’s image, the set of non-negative real numbers, reflecting that a number can be the output of this function if and only if it is a non-negative real number. In this case, the larger set containing the range is called the codomain.[1] This usage is more common in modern mathematics. Read the rest of this entry


Plot of 1/(sqrt(x)*(x+1)) from 0.093 to 3.0

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A “proper” Riemann integral assumes the integrand is defined and finite on a closed and bounded interval, bracketed by the limits of integration. An improper integral occurs when one or more of these conditions is not satisfied. In some cases such integrals may be defined by considering the limit of a sequence of proper Riemann integrals on progressively larger intervals.

If the interval is unbounded, for instance at its upper end, then the improper integral is the limit as that endpoint goes to infinity.

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Plot of approximations to integral of sqrt(x) ...

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A number of general inequalities hold for Riemann-integrable functions defined on a closed and bounded interval [a, b] and can be generalized to other notions of integral (Lebesgue and Daniell).

  • Upper and lower bounds. An integrable function f on [a, b], is necessarily bounded on that interval. Thus there are real numbers m and M so that mf (x) ≤ M for all x in [a, b]. Since the lower and upper sums of f over [a, b] are therefore bounded by, respectively, m(ba) and M(ba), it follows that
 m(b - a) \leq \int_a^b f(x) \, dx \leq M(b - a).
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Up Riemann

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The Riemann integral is not defined for a wide range of functions and situations of importance in applications (and of interest in theory). For example, the Riemann integral can easily integrate density to find the mass of a steel beam, but cannot accommodate a steel ball resting on it. This motivates other definitions, under which a broader assortment of functions are integrable (Rudin 1987). The Lebesgue integral, in particular, achieves great flexibility by directing attention to the weights in the weighted sum.

The definition of the Lebesgue integral thus begins with a measure, μ. In the simplest case, the Lebesgue measure μ(A) of an interval A = [a,b] is its width, ba, so that the Lebesgue integral agrees with the (proper) Riemann integral when both exist. In more complicated cases, the sets being measured can be highly fragmented, with no continuity and no resemblance to intervals.

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The Riemann integral is defined in terms of Riemann sums of functions with respect to tagged partitions of an interval. Let [a,b] be a closed interval of the real line; then a tagged partition of [a,b] is a finite sequence

 a = x_0 \le t_1 \le x_1 \le t_2 \le x_2 \le \cdots \le x_{n-1} \le t_n \le x_n = b . \,\!

Riemann sums converging as intervals halve, whether sampled at ■ right, ■ minimum, ■ maximum, or ■ left.

This partitions the interval [a,b] into n sub-intervals [xi−1, xi] indexed by i, each of which is “tagged” with a distinguished point ti ∈ [xi−1, xi]. A Riemann sum of a function f with respect to such a tagged partition is defined as

\sum_{i=1}^{n} f(t_i) \Delta_i ;
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