Mathematics Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for people studying math at any level and professionals in related fields. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Whenever I'm studying a new topic in mathematics, the question of potential practical application is the one that matters to me the most. While it's relatively easy to come up with hypothetical cases of practical application of, let's say, optimization, related rates etc., in this case I'm confused.

I must underline that I fully appreciate the elegance of the idea of local linearization, but I would really like to see how this technique can be applied to solve real world problems.

share|cite|improve this question
up vote 0 down vote accepted

Local linearity lets us approximate a curve about a point with a line, very useful if you're a statistician or numerical analyst. Also, once it is known that a curve is locally linear, we are able to use tools of calculus to perform useful analysis on it. One specific example of local linearity helping us is Newton's method for finding roots of a function.

share|cite|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.