Elementary questions about functions, notation, properties, and operations such as function composition.

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8
votes
2answers
758 views

On sort-of-linear functions

Background A function $ f: \mathbb{R}^n \rightarrow \mathbb{R} \ $ is linear if it satisfies $$ (1)\;\; f(x+y) = f(x) + f(y) \ , \ and $$ $$ (2)\;\; f(\alpha x) = \alpha f(x) $$ for all $ x,y \in ...
8
votes
2answers
142 views

What is the meaning of $\mathbb{R}\setminus\{0\}$?

This is used in many posts related to functions and googling it doesn't help. What does this mean? $\mathbb{R}$ should stand for all Real numbers.
8
votes
7answers
239 views

Prove that $f(x)\equiv0$ on $\left[0,1\right]$

Let $f(x)$ differentiable on $\left[0,1\right]$ such that $f(0) = 0$. Also, assuming that $\forall x\in \left[0,1\right]:\left|f'(x)\right| \le \left|f(x)\right|$. Prove that $f(x)\equiv 0$ What I ...
8
votes
3answers
81 views

$(\Bbb R \to \Bbb R : x\mapsto x^2)\equiv(\Bbb R \to \Bbb{R}_{\geq 0} : x \mapsto x^2) \not\equiv (\Bbb C \to \Bbb C:x\mapsto x^2)$

Consider the following functions: $f:\Bbb R \to \Bbb R : x\mapsto x^2$ $g:\Bbb R \to \Bbb{R}_{\geq 0} : x \mapsto x^2$ $h:\Bbb C \to \Bbb C:x\mapsto x^2$ I'm quite sure that $h$ is not equal to $f$ ...
8
votes
3answers
193 views

Can we take images of equivalence relations?

Given a function $f : X \rightarrow Y$, it is well-known that we can take the image under $f$ of any subset $A \subseteq X$, and we can take the preimage under $f$ of any subset $A \subseteq Y$. This ...
8
votes
3answers
242 views

is the following a decreasing function?

I am stuck on figuring out why the following function is a decreasing function when I read a paper. The function is following $$f(x)=-\frac{1}{x}\log[{pe^{-ax}+(1-p)e^{-bx}}]$$ where $a$ and $b$ are ...
8
votes
3answers
2k views

chain rule using tree diagram, why does it work?

In multivariable calculus, I was taught to compute the chain rule by drawing a "tree diagram" (a directed acyclic graph) representing the dependence of one variable on the others. I now want to ...
8
votes
2answers
189 views

Continuous $f$ satisfying $f(2x)=f(x-1/4)+f(x+1/4)$ on $(-1/2,1/2)$

What are the continuous functions $f\colon (-\frac{1}{2},\frac{1}{2}) \to \mathbb{C}$ that satisfy the following functional equation, and how are they derived? ...
8
votes
1answer
116 views

Find $f$ such as $f(x) = \sum_{n=1}^\infty \frac{f(x^n)}{2^n}$

Find $f \in C^0([0,1] , \mathbb{R})$ such as $$f(x) = \sum_{n=1}^\infty \frac{f(x^n)}{2^n}$$ My try : Constant functions work fine. We can notice : $$f(x) = \frac{f(x)}{2}+\sum_{n=2}^\infty ...
8
votes
2answers
416 views

if $|f(n+1)-f(n)|\leq 2001$, $|g(n+1)-g(n)|\leq 2001$, $|(fg)(n+1)-(fg)(n)|\leq 2001$ then $\min\{f(n),g(n)\}$ is bounded

The following question was proposed at MOP 2001 A function $f:\mathbb{N}\to\mathbb{N}$ is called cautious if $|f(n+1)-f(n)|\leq 2001$ for all $ n\in\mathbb{N} $. Suppose that $f,g,h$ are ...
8
votes
2answers
104 views

Is function $f:\mathbb C-\{0\}\rightarrow\mathbb C$ prescribed by $z\rightarrow \large \frac{1}{z}$ by definition discontinuous at $0$?

Is function $f:\mathbb C-\{0\}\rightarrow\mathbb C$ prescribed by $z\rightarrow \large{\frac{1}{z}}$ by definition discontinuous at $0$? Personally I would say: "no". In my view a function can only ...
8
votes
3answers
255 views

Determining the maximum value for the solution of this delay differential equation?

I am working on the following delay differential equation $$\frac{df}{dt}=f-f^3-\alpha f(t-\delta)\tag{1},$$ where $\frac{1}{2}\leq\alpha\leq 1$ and $\delta\geq 1$. I know that there are three ...
8
votes
2answers
98 views

Maximal ideals in $C^\infty(\mathbb{R})$

I know that for a compact manifold $M$ any maximal ideal in the algebra $C^\infty(M)$ of smooth functions on $M$ is of the form $\mathfrak{m}_p=\{f\in C^\infty(M)|f(p)=0\}$. For example, the proof is ...
8
votes
1answer
410 views

To get addition formula of $\tan (x)$ via analytic methods

Assume that we only know $\tan (0)=0$ and also given the relation $\tan'(x)=1+\tan^2(x)$ about $\tan (x)$ and we do not know other $\tan (x)$ relations of trigonometry. How can I get the additon ...
8
votes
1answer
90 views

Are there associative bijections $f\colon \mathbb{N} \times \mathbb{N} \to \mathbb{N}$?

This is my first question and I hope this question is not too brief to be acceptable: There are well-known bijections $\mathbb{N \times N \to N}$ and well-known associative compositions on countably ...
8
votes
2answers
13k views

Proving a function is onto and one to one

I'm reading up on how to prove if a function (represented by a formula) is one-to-one or onto, and I'm having some trouble understanding. To prove if a function is one-to-one, it says that I have to ...
8
votes
3answers
181 views

How do I read this question? (subject: bijections)

Introduction In Basic Algebra I, I am struggling with fully understanding the following exercise: Show that $S\overset{\alpha}{\to}T$ is injective if and only if there is a map ...
8
votes
1answer
236 views

If the set of values , for which a function has positive derivative , is dense then is the function increasing?

Let $f:\mathbb R \to \mathbb R$ be a differentiable function such that $A:=${ $x \in \mathbb R :f'(x)>0$ } is dense in $\mathbb R$ , then is it true that $f$ is an increasing function ? What ...
8
votes
1answer
137 views

If the function $f$ satisfies the equation $f(xf(y)+x)=xy+f(x)$, find $f$

Question Let the function $f:\mathbb R\to\mathbb R$,and such $$f(xf(y)+x)=xy+f(x)$$ Find all $f(x)$ Let $x=1,y=1$,then $$f(f(1)+1)=1+f(1)$$ let $f(1)=t$,then $$f(t+1)=1+t$$ So I guess ...
8
votes
3answers
3k views

Change of order of double limit of function sequence

The more general quesion is under what conditions the folloing equality will hold (all functions are real valued): $$\lim_{x \rightarrow a} \ \lim_{j \rightarrow \infty} f_j(x) = \lim_{j \rightarrow ...
8
votes
1answer
145 views

If $f:X \to X$ is a continuous bijection and every point has finite orbit, is $f^{-1}$ continuous?

If $f:X \to X$ (codomain and domain have the same topology) is a continuous bijection and every point has finite orbit, is $f^{-1}$ continuous? Note that the orbit being finite and $f$ being a ...
8
votes
1answer
241 views

Prove that : $|f(b)-f(a)|\geqslant (b-a) \sqrt{f'(a) f'(b)}$ with $(a,b) \in \mathbb{R}^{2}$

Let $(a,b) \in \mathbb{R}^{2}$ such that $a<b$ and $f\in C^2([a,b],\mathbb{R})$ such that $f'\neq 0$ and $f''/f'$ is decreasing. Prove that : $$|f(b)-f(a)|\geqslant (b-a) ...
8
votes
1answer
77 views

Is every real valued function on an interval a sum of two functions with Intermediate Value Property?

If $I$ is an interval of real numbers , then is it true that any function $f:I \to \mathbb R$ can be written as $f=f_1+f_2$ , where $f_1 , f_2 : I \to \mathbb R$ have the Intermediate value property? ...
8
votes
1answer
98 views

A question of rationality

This problem was asked to me by a friend and I simply have no idea about it. So I have not progressed a single bit. The problem is this: If $f :\mathbb{R}\to \mathbb{R}$ is an infinitely ...
8
votes
4answers
274 views

Why isn't $y=(x^6)^{1/3}$ a polynomial function?

I've been told that $y=(x^6)^{1/3}$ isn't a polynomial function because of the radical but I believe that the equation could be simplified to $y=x^2$ which fits the definition of a polynomial ...
8
votes
1answer
214 views

Function mapping challange

For a given set $A=\{1, 2, 3, 4, \ldots, n\}$, find the number of non-constant mappings (associations ) $f$ from $A$ to $A$ such that $f(k) \leq f(k + 1)$ and $f(k) = f(f(k + 1))$. This is ...
8
votes
2answers
351 views

Prove the following property of $f(x)$?

Let $$f(x)=|a_1\sin(x)+a_2\sin(2x)+a_3\sin(3x)+...+a_n\sin(nx)|.$$ Given that $f(x)$ is less than or equal to $|\sin(x)|$ for all $x$, prove that $|a_1+a_2+a_3+....|$ is less than or equal to ...
8
votes
1answer
95 views

How many expressions can be formed with two commutative and associative functions?

EDIT: I have posted a generalization of this question to MathOverflow here. Suppose we have two binary functions $f,g$ which are commutative and associative, i.e., satisfying $$ f(a,b) = f(b,a) ...
8
votes
1answer
56 views

About continuity

one question is disturbing me : let f and g two continuous (real-valued) functions on the unit interval [0,1] with the property that $[f(x)-f(y)][g(x)-g(y)]=0 ,\forall x,y \in [0,1]$. To my ...
8
votes
0answers
86 views

Functional equation $f(x)=\frac{1}{1+f(\frac{1}{1+f(x)})}$

Problem: Find all continuous real-valued functions $f$ such that $$f(x)=\frac{1}{1+f(\frac{1}{1+f(x)})}.\tag{1}$$ Here $f$ is allowed to be defined only on a subset of $\mathbb{R}$. The only ...
8
votes
1answer
48 views

Find the function of separation between two functions

I seriously doubt that is what it is actually called, but I'm not very knowledgeable in this matter. Conceptually, what I am trying to do is calculate the function of a line/curve that shows the ...
8
votes
0answers
96 views

Exercise about continuous functions

Consider a continuous function $f \, : \, [0,1] \, \longrightarrow \, [0,+\infty)$ such that $f(0)=f(1)=0$ and : $\forall x \in (0,1), \; f(x) > 0$. I would like to prove that there exist ...
8
votes
2answers
121 views

Example of function with a hundred minima

Find a function $f\colon\mathbb{R}^2 \to\mathbb{R}$, $f \in C^{\infty}$, such that $\nabla f = 0$ for exactly $100$ points and in these points there are only local minima.
8
votes
0answers
238 views

Approximation of the exponential

Let $c>1,k\in\mathbb{N}$. Let's consider two approximations of the exponential function : The first one is the most common one $f_k(x)=\left(1+\frac{x}{c^k}\right)^{c^k}$ and the second one is ...
8
votes
0answers
346 views

Compositional “square roots”

Let $A$ be a set and $f\colon A\to A$ a function. The primary and general question is: What conditions are necessary so that there exists $g$ such that for each $x$ in $A$, $g(g(x))=f(x)$? This is a ...
8
votes
0answers
346 views

Multiplicative Identity analog for absolute value

Is there a standard name for the function: $$ f(x) = \begin{cases} x & \text{if |x|≤1;}\\ 1/x & \text{if |x|>1;}\\ \end{cases} $$ And is there a potential application of this ...
8
votes
2answers
205 views

How can we prove this function must be linear?

Let $f:[a,b]\to\mathbb{R}$ be continuous. Suppose for any sequence $(r_n)_{n=0}^{\infty}$ with $\lim_{n\to\infty}r_n=0$, and any $x\in(a,b)$: ...
7
votes
6answers
976 views

Do we have always $f(A \cap B) = f(A) \cap f(B)$?

Suppose $A$ and $B$ are subsets of a topological space and $f$ is any function from $X$ to another topological space $Y$. Do we have always $f(A \cap B) = f(A) \cap f(B)$? Thanks in advance
7
votes
6answers
3k views

Example where $f\circ g$ is bijective, but neither $f$ nor $g$ is bijective

Can anyone come up with an explicit example of two functions $f$ and $g$ such that: $f\circ g$ is bijective, but neither $f$ nor $g$ is bijective? I tried the following: $$f:\mathbb{R}\rightarrow ...
7
votes
6answers
4k views

Max Min of function less than Min max of function

I can't understand why max min of a function is less than equal to min max of that function i.e Why $$\underset{x}{\text{max}}\:\underset{y}{\text{min}} f(x,y) \leq ...
7
votes
6answers
1k views

What do I not understand about one-to-one functions?

Firstly, a definition: Definition 1: A function $\phi : X \rightarrow Y$ is one-to-one if $\phi(x_1) = \phi(x_2)$ only when $x_1 = x_2$. Now the question: Students often misunderstand the ...
7
votes
7answers
378 views

Function satisfying $x = f(f(x))$ and $x \not= f(x)$

Is there a function that would satisfy the following conditions?: $\forall x \in X, x = f(f(x))$ and $x \not= f(x)$, where the set $X$ is the set of all triplets $(x_1,x_2,x_3)$ with $x_i \in ...
7
votes
3answers
500 views

If $f \circ g = f$, prove that $f$ is a constant function.

Suppose $A$ is a nonempty set and $f: A \rightarrow A$ and for all $g:A \rightarrow A,$ $f \circ g = f$. Prove that $f$ is a constant function. This result seems obvious, but I can't seem to find ...
7
votes
2answers
740 views

Intuition behind arc length formula

I understand the arc length formula is derived from adding the distances between a series of points on the curve, and using the mean value theorem to get: $ L = \int_a^b \sqrt{ 1 + (f'(x))^2 } dx ...
7
votes
2answers
329 views

Must $g$ be the identity if $f = g \circ f$?

I am finding it hard to solve the following problem. Let $A$ is a set and $f : A \rightarrow A$ and $g : A \rightarrow A$. If $f = g \circ f$, must $g$ be an identity function always? Will there be ...
7
votes
9answers
424 views

Nonpiecewise Function Defined at a Point but Not Continuous There

I make a big fuss that my calculus students provide a "continuity argument" to evaluate limits such as $\lim_{x \rightarrow 0} 2x + 1$, by which I mean they should tell me that $2x+1$ is a polynomial, ...
7
votes
6answers
217 views

Representing the function $\mathbb Z_9\to\mathbb Z_9$, $f(0) = 1$, $f(1) = \ldots = f(8) = 0$ as a polynomial in $\mathbb Z_9[x]$

Let $\mathbb Z_9=\left\{0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8\right\}$ be the set of integers modulo 9 and $f:\mathbb Z_9 \rightarrow \mathbb Z_9$ be a function. Assume $f(0)=1$, $f(1)=f(2)=...=f(8)=0$. What is the ...
7
votes
2answers
243 views

Does $F(t)F'(t) \le 0$ imply that $F$ does not change signs?

The question is in the title, really. More precisely, suppose $F:[0,1] \to \mathbb{R}$ is continuously differentiable and satisfies (i) $F(t)F'(t) \le 0$ for all $t \in [0,1]$ (ii) $F(0) = 1$ ...
7
votes
4answers
667 views

Solving the functional equation $f(x+1) - f(x-1) = g(x)$

Given a function $g(x)$, is it possible to find a function $f(x)$ that satisfies $$ f(x+1) - f(x-1) = g(x) $$
7
votes
5answers
72 views

Show that if $g \circ f$ is injective, then so is $f$.

The Problem: Let $X, Y, Z$ be sets and $f: X \to Y, g:Y \to Z$ be functions. (a) Show that if $g \circ f$ is injective, then so is $f$. (b) If $g \circ f$ is surjective, must $g$ be surjective? ...