The Art of Polynomial Interpolation

Stuart Murphy

The inspiration for this text grew out of a simple question that emerged over many years of teaching math to Middle School, High School, and College students. Practically speaking, what is the origin of a particular polynomial? So much time is spent analyzing, factoring, simplifying, and graphing polynomials that it is easy to lose sight of the fact that polynomials have a wealth of practical uses. Exploring the techniques of interpolating data allows us to view the development and birth of a polynomial. This text is focused on laying a foundation for understanding and applying several common forms of polynomial interpolation.