In very generalized terms, a real function y = f(x) can be understood as a rule for assigning a real number y to a real number x. Some functions play a central role in mathematics and their numerous applications, as well as in nature. Among others, these are the power functions of the form y = x n ; the trigonometric functions y = sin x, y = tan x, etc.; the exponential functions y = a x ; and also their inverses.
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