Calculate the Derivative of …Set differentiation variable and order in "Options". Preview of your input:
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ResultAbove, enter the function to derive. Differentiation variable and other settings can be changed in "Options". When you're done, click "Go!" to start the derivative calculation. The result will be shown below.
How the Derivative Calculator works …
For those with a technical background, the following section explains how the Derivative Calculator works.
First, a parser analyzes the mathematical formula. It transforms it into a form that is better understandable by a computer, namely a tree (see figure below). In doing this, the Derivative Calculator has to respect the order of operations. A specialty in mathematical formulas is that the multiplication sign can be left out sometimes, for example we write "5x" instead of "5*x". The Derivative Calculator has to detect these cases and insert the multiplication sign.
Maxima takes care of actually computing the derivative of the mathematical formula. Like any computer algebra system, it applies a number of rules to simplify the formula and calculate the derivatives according to the commonly known differentiation rules. Maxima's output is transformed to LaTeX again and is then presented to the user.
If you have any questions or ideas for improvements to the Derivative Calculator, don't hesitate to write me an e-mail.