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 Description  
 Linear Function:  An equation in which the graphs of the solutions form a (non-vertical) line.

Salli went to a CD store to buy some CDs. She found that, at this particular store, each CD costs $12.00, with tax included. She had $50.00 in her pocket and wanted to know how much change she would get back if she purchased a certain number of CDs. So she created the following chart:

 number of CDs purchased

 change

 0

 $50.00

 1

 $38.00

 2

 $26.00

 3

 $14.00

 4

 $2.00

 

 

The graph to the left is a graph of the function c = 50 - 12n. This is a linear function since the graph of the solutions above results in a straight line.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The red points at left are the some of the solutions to the equation: y = x2. Note that the red points do not fit onto a line. Thus y = x2 is not a linear function. We say y = x2 is a nonlinear function.