MathGroup Archive 1999

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Calculus of variations


Are there any good books, or freely-available Mathematica notebooks, dealing
with the calculus of variations?  In particular, I am trying to solve
the following type of problem:  given two functions of a single
variable f1[x] and f2[x], which are 0 almost everywhere, find the
value of x0 such that Integrate[(f1[x]-f2[x+x0])^2,{x,-infinity,
infinity}] is minimized.  I don't think that this problem can be cast
into "standard" Lagrangian form, but I haven't made a serious attempt.

Bill Campbell



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