# Introduction to definite integrals | Summary and Q&A

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October 19, 2007
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Introduction to definite integrals

## TL;DR

Calculating the area under a curve helps determine the distance traveled and the velocity of an object.

## Questions & Answers

### Q: What is the significance of finding the derivative of the distance function?

The derivative gives the instantaneous rate of change of distance with respect to time, which is equivalent to the velocity of the object at a specific moment.

### Q: How is the area under the velocity curve related to distance?

The total distance traveled by the object can be calculated by finding the sum of all the small areas under the velocity curve.

### Q: Why is the distance function represented by a parabolic curve?

The parabolic curve represents the relationship between distance and time for a moving object with acceleration. The object is constantly accelerating, causing the distance to increase rapidly.

### Q: How does adjusting the size of the time intervals affect the accuracy of the distance calculation?

Smaller time intervals (dt) and more rectangles provide a more accurate approximation of the total distance traveled, as the areas under the curve become more precise.

## Summary & Key Takeaways

• The distance an object has traveled can be represented by a function that relates its position to time.

• The derivative of the distance function with respect to time gives the instantaneous velocity.

• The area under the velocity curve represents the total distance traveled by the object.