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Classifications and Combinations of Functions

The modern notion of a function is derived from the efforts of many seventeenth- and eighteenth-century mathematicians. Of particular note was Leonhard Euler, to whom we are indebted for the function notation y = f(x). By the end of the eighteenth century, mathematicians and scientists had concluded that many real-world phenomena could be represented by mathematical models taken from a collection of functions called elementary functions.

Elementary functions fall into three categories.

  1. Algebraic functions (polynomial, radical, rational)
  2. Trigonometric functions (sine, cosine, tangent, and so on)
  3. Exponential and logarithmic functions

Source: Essential Calculus – Early Transcendental Functions by Ron Larson


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