Conic sections, or conics, are those curves that can be obtained as sections of a double right-circular cone and a plane (see Fig. 2.1). Such a section is either (i) a circle, (ii) an ellipse, (iii) a parabola, (iv) a hyperbola, or (v) a line-pair; but apart from explaining the name ‘conic’ we shall not use this definition.
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