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Relation and Function
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Relations and Functions
 
Relations
A relation is a set of inputs and outputs, often written as ordered pairs (input, output). We can also represent a relation as a mapping diagram or a graph. For example, the relation can be represented as:



Mapping Diagram of Relation


Lines connect the inputs with their outputs. The relation can also be represented as:

Graph of Relation
 
 
Functions
 
A function is a relation in which each input has only one output.
In the relation , y is a function of x, because for each input x (1, 2, 3, or 0), there is only one output y. x is not a function of y, because the input y = 3 has multiple outputs: x = 1 and x = 2.


Examples:



\: y is a function of x, x is a function of y.



: y is not a function of x (x = 3 has multiple outputs), x is a function of y.



: y is a function of x, x is not a function of y (y = 9 has multiple outputs).



: y is not a function of x (x = 1 has multiple outputs), x is not a function of y (y = 2 has multiple outputs).
The Line Test for Mapping Diagrams
To check if a relation is a function, given a mapping diagram of the relation, use the following criterion: If each input has only one line connected to it, then the outputs are a function of the inputs.


Example: In the following mapping diagram, y is a function of x, but x is not a function of y:



Line Test
The Vertical and Horizontal Line Tests for Graphs
To determine whether y is a function of x, given a graph of a relation, use the following criterion: if every vertical line you can draw goes through only 1 point, y is a function of x. If you can draw a vertical line that goes through 2 points, y is not a function of x. This is called the vertical line test.


Example 1: In the following graph, y is a function of x:



Passes Vertical Line Test


Example 2: In the following graph, y is not a function of x:





Fails Vertical Line Test
To determine whether x is a function of y, given a graph of a relation, use the following criterion: If every horizontal line you can draw passes through only 1 point, x is a function of y. If you can draw a horizontal line that passes through 2 points, x is not a function of y. This is called the horizontal line test.


Example 1: In the following graph, x is a function of y:





Passes Horizontal Line Test


Example 2: In the following graph, x is not a function of y:





Fails Horizontal Line Test

*END*

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