Chapter 5 - Roots of Nonlinear Equations

Assignment, Topics, and Practice Exercises

Assignment: Due Friday, April 9, 2004 by 4:00 pm

  1. Finish the Root Finding Exploration (handout from Tuesday's class)

  2. Do computer problem 5.7 on page 250 as follows:
    1. Write a program to do Newton's method (just modify one of the programs from the Exploration - that is the easiest thing to do).
    2. Run the program with the starting point given in the problem. Answer the problem's question of what happens AND using a graph of the function (you can easily get Mathematica to draw a graph for you if you want) illustrate what is going on.
    3. For part (b), use your program to answer the question. In particular, try several different starting points and determine the convergence properties (write them down). Write your observations about the roots (pathological?) and the behavior of Newton and relate it to the graph.

  3. Do computer problem 5.8 on page 250 as follows:
    1. Do what the problem asks you to do. {NOTE: In Java, the arccosine function is Math.acos(x), the exponential function is Math.exp(x), the log function is Math.log(x), and the cosine function is Math.cos(x))
    2. The problem tells you to use 3 as the starting point for the iteration schemes. Try other starting values -- a wide variety in the range of 1 to 100. Comment on the convergence properties for the different strategies. Use a graph of the function to help explain what is going.

  4. Modify the two Secant programs from the Root Exploration Lab Exercise to do the False Position method (a safeguarded variation of secant). Run your programs (for the two functions in the lab exercise) and compare the convergence properties (for example, how do the convergence rates seem to compare? are there starting points for which one method converges but the other doesn't?).

HAND IN: Turn in the output from your programs together with your written analyses (and graphs, where appropriate). Email a tar file of the programs to

Topics from the Chapter

Other Practice/Review Exercises