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# differential calculus

the branch of mathematics that deals with differentials and derivatives.
[1700-05]

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Branch of mathematical analysis, devised by Isaac Newton and G.W. Leibniz, and concerned with the problem of finding the rate of change of a function with respect to the variable on which it depends.

Thus it involves calculating derivatives and using them to solve problems involving nonconstant rates of change. Typical applications include finding maximum and minimum values of functions in order to solve practical problems in optimization.

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Universalium. 2010.

### Look at other dictionaries:

• Differential calculus — Calculus Cal cu*lus, n.; pl. {Calculi}. [L, calculus. See {Calculate}, and {Calcule}.] 1. (Med.) Any solid concretion, formed in any part of the body, but most frequent in the organs that act as reservoirs, and in the passages connected with… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

• Differential calculus — differential dif fer*en tial, a. [Cf. F. diff[ e]rentiel.] 1. Relating to or indicating a difference; creating a difference; discriminating; special; as, differential characteristics; differential duties; a differential rate. [1913 Webster] For… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

• differential calculus — ► NOUN Mathematics ▪ the part of calculus concerned with the derivatives of functions …   English terms dictionary

• differential calculus — n. Math. the branch of mathematics dealing with derivatives and their applications: cf. INTEGRAL CALCULUS …   English World dictionary

• differential calculus — n [U] a way of measuring the speed at which an object is moving at a particular moment …   Dictionary of contemporary English

• Differential calculus — The graph of a function, drawn in black, and a tangent line to that function, drawn in red. The slope of the tangent line equals the derivative of the function at the marked point. Topics in Calculus …   Wikipedia

• Differential (calculus) — In mathematics, and more specifically, in differential calculus, the term differential has several interrelated meanings.Basic notions* In traditional approaches to calculus, the differential (e.g. dx, dy, dt, etc...) of a function represents an… …   Wikipedia

• differential calculus — noun the part of calculus that deals with the variation of a function with respect to changes in the independent variable (or variables) by means of the concepts of derivative and differential • Syn: ↑method of fluxions • Topics: ↑mathematics,… …   Useful english dictionary

• differential calculus — noun The calculus that deals with instantaneous rates of change. See Also: differential, differential equation, differentiate …   Wiktionary

• differential calculus — noun Mathematics the part of calculus concerned with the derivatives of functions …   English new terms dictionary

• differential calculus — noun Date: 1702 a branch of mathematics concerned chiefly with the study of the rate of change of functions with respect to their variables especially through the use of derivatives and differentials …   New Collegiate Dictionary