A derivative is a function , that gives the slope of the function . To signify a derivative, an apostrophe is put in front of the function name, for example
For example, the derivative of would be , because the slope of a horizontal line is 0. Since the line is continuous. The derivative of would be , because the slope of a 45 degree line is 1.
But those examples were linear. Linear derivatives are easy, the real deal is in non-linear functions. Some examples for non-linear functions’ derivatives:
It gets complicated, and harder to compute on your own. For that, people have discovered formulas for differentiating (the process of taking a derivative). I will get on to those rules in the first part of this series (this post was the intro). For now, here is Wolfram Alpha’s tool for calculating derivatives: