Calculus IV
15.Functions of Several Variables
16.Multiple Integration
17.Vector Analysis
Course: Trigonometry
Topic: Vectors
Subtopic: Algebraic Approach and Dot Product


We previously introduced vectors geometrically. In this lesson we approach vectors algebraically, e.g. adding vectors is accomplished using their algebraic vector representations. There is more vector terminology to learn, and several theorems and formulas to apply. One process of particular importance is the dot product of two vectors.


By the end of this topic you should know and be prepared to be tested on:


Define: unit vector, unit horizontal vector, unit vertical vector, basic unit vectors, orthogonal, normal vector, scalar product, dot product

Supplemental Resources

Calculating the dot product manually is not difficult, but if you want to do so electronically I have directions for Texas Instruments calculators TI-86, TI-89, and TI-92 here: Prof. Keely's Calculator Guide: Vector Products.

For a visual understanding of what the dot product means geometrically explore this Java applet: www.falstad.com/dotproduct