We are given a ratio:



$$g(x) \in \mathbb{R}^{+}$$ $$f(x) \in \mathbb{N}\: \cap f(x)\ge 2$$

So $g(x)$ returns values in $[0,+\infty]$ while $f(x)$ returns values in $\{2,3,4,\ldots\}$.

I am looking for a confirmation about a very simple question: if I maximize $\dfrac{g(x)}{f(x)}$, do I also maximize $\dfrac{g(x)}{f(x)-1}$ in this very particular case?

  • $\begingroup$ Hi and welcome on Math SE! Can you get any infos about your case by plotting $g/f$ (and $g/(f-1)$) as a function of two variables, vs. $f$ and $g$? $\endgroup$ – MattAllegro Nov 22 '14 at 12:10

Of course you do not.

An example is $g(x) = x^2 - 100x + 10000$, and $f(x) = \text{max} \{ \lceil \sqrt{x} \rceil, 2 \}. $ [Sorry for not finding a nice example]

In one case you have minimum is somewhere around 76-77, in the other one 79-80. You can play with it here.

EDIT: I see you wanted to maximize, I did minimize. But the reason why it doesn't hold is the same.


If I interpret your question correctly, this depends on $f(x)$ and $g(x)$, e.g.:

if $f(x)$ is constant then $\frac{g(x)}{f(x)}=c\cdot g(x)$ (c being a constant), so it is maximized at the same $x$ (obviously).

if e.g. $g(x)$ is constant and $f(x)$ is not and there is a $x_0$ such that $f(x_0)-1=f(x)$, then clearly(well, by substitution) this $x_0$ is the maximum. Example: $\frac1{\lceil x+2\rceil}$ is maximal for $x=-1$ whereas $\frac1{\lceil x+2\rceil-1}$ is maximal for $x=0$. ($\lceil\cdot\rceil$ is the ceiling function that returns the next larger integer for any real number)

Also, $\frac{g(x)}{f(x)-1}$ is not defined if $f(x)=1$.

  • $\begingroup$ I know that my question seems a little bit weird, but I had to formulate it like this (the scope would be too complicated to explain in a post). But as I said, f(x) is not a constant, but it is a function x which returns a natural value equal or greater than 2. Similarly, g(x) is not a costant but is a function x which returns a positive real value. $\endgroup$ – Sergey Nov 22 '14 at 11:57
  • $\begingroup$ Well, $f(x)=2$ is also a function, with the special property that it returns 2 everywhere. So I take it that both $f(x)$ and $g(x)$ are non-constant functions? $\endgroup$ – marzipankaiser Nov 22 '14 at 12:12
  • $\begingroup$ yes, take it as both are not constant functions. $\endgroup$ – Sergey Nov 22 '14 at 13:06
  • $\begingroup$ g(x) returns a positive real value. f(x) returns a natural value equal or greater than 2. $\endgroup$ – Sergey Nov 22 '14 at 13:07

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