B Introduction
Objectives
10.2 Continuity on Bounded Closed Hnakervals
110.3 Poin%wiseContiw~ityrand Uniform Continuity
10.4 Sumnlary
18.5 Sollrstions/Himtj:/Answers
  . .
10,B INTRODUCTION
 
%%wing studied in the last two 11Pliis limit and continuity of a function at a point,
dgcbra of limits and continuous functions, the connection between limits and
carltinuity etc., we now take up tlie study of the Gehaviour of continuous functions
a n bounded closed intervals on the real line. In Section 10.2 you will learn that
continuous functions on such intervals are bounded and attain their bounds; they
take all values in between any two values taken at p ~ i n t ssf such intervals. In
Section 10.3 you will also be introduced to the concept of uniform continuity and
further you will see that a continuous function on a bounded closed interval is
uniformly continuous. This means that continuous functions are wellbehaved on
bounded closed intervals. Thus, we will see that bounded cbsed intervals form an
important subclass of the class of subsets ~f the real line which are known as
compact subsets of the real line. You will study more about this in higher
mathematics at a later stage. We will henceforth call bounded closed intervals of R
as compact intervals.
The results of this unit play an important and crucial role in Real Analysis and so
for further study in analysis, you must understand clearly the various theorems
given in this unit. Some of the deep theorems of Block 3 are contained in this
unit.
It may be noted that an interval of R will not be a compact interval if it is not a
bounded or closed interval.
Objectives
/.
After the completion of the study of this unit, you should be able to
@distinguish between the properties of continuous functions on bounded closed
intervals and those on intervals which are not closed or bounded.
e understand the important role played by bounded closed intervals in Real
Analysis.
@knowthe concept of uniform continuity and its relationship with continuity.
1
i.e., f(x) 5 K  7V x E [a, bl.
M
But this comradicts the choice of K as the least upper bound of the set
[f(x) : a I x 1: b 1 . This contradiction, therefore, proves the existince of air 5,. in
[a,b] such that f(xz) = K r f(x) for a Ix I; b. The existence of xl in [a,b] such
that f(xl) 5 f(x) for a G x I b can be proved on exactly similar lines by taking
the g.1.b. of ( f(x) : a s x 5 b ] instead of the 1.u.b. or else by considering f
instead of f. (Try it).
Theorems 1 and 2 are usually proved using what is called the HeineBorel property
on the real line or other equivalent properties. The proofs given in this unit
straightaway appeal to the completeness property of the red line (Unit 2) namely
that any subset of the real line bounded above has least upper bound. These
proofs may be slightly longer than the conventional ones but it does not make use
of any other theorem except the property of the real line stated above.
As remarked earlier, the properties of continuous functions fail if the intervals are
not blinded or closed, that is, the intervals of the type
1% b[, la, bl, [a, bt, [a,' m[, la, 4,I m, a], ] a,a[ or ] m,oo[.
We illustrate them with the help of the followirrg examples and exercises.
EXAMPLE 1 : Show that the function f defined by f(x) = 3 V x E [O, a[is
continuous but not bounded.
SOLUTION : The function f being a polynomial function is continuous in [O, a [ .
The domain of the function is an unbounded closed interval. The function is not
bounded since the set of values of the function that is the range of the function is
(x2 : x € [0, oo[] = [0, a [ which is not bounded.
1
EXAMPLE 2 : Show that the function f defined by f ( ~ )=  V x E 10, 1[ is
X
continuous but not bounded.
SOLUTION : The function f is continuous being the quotient of continuous
functions F(x) = 1 and G(x) = x with
G(x) z 0, x E 10, I[ (Refer Unit 9).
Domain of f is bounded but not a closed interval. The function is nqt bounded
since its range is ( l/x : x E 10, I[] = 11, m[ which is not a bdunded set.
EXERCISE 1
Show that the function f defined by f(x) = x V x E I, a [ is contin~oasbut
mot bounded.
Properlies of Continuous
EXERCISE 3
Show that the function f given by f(x) = sin x, x E 10, r/2[ is continuous but
does not attain any of its bounds.
EXERCISE 4
Prove that the function f given by f(x) = x 2 V x E ]OD,O[ is continuous but does
not attain its g.1.b.
I
We next prove another important property known as the intermediate value
I
property of a continuous function on an interval I. We do not need the
assumption that I is bounded and closed. This property justifies our intuitive idea
of a continuous function namely as a function f which cannot jump from one
value to another since it takes on between any two values f(a) and f(b) all values
lying between f(a) and f(b).
THEOREM 3 : (Intermediate Value Theorem). Let f be a continuous function on
an interval containing a and b:If K Is any number between f(n) and f(b) then
there is a number c, a s c s b such that f(c) = K.
PROOF : Either f(a) = f(b) or f(a) < f(b) or f(b).< f(a). If f(a) = f(b) then
K = f(a) = f(b) and so c can be taken to be either a or b. We will assume that
f(a) < f(b). (The other case can be dealt with similarly.) We can, therefore,
assume that f(a) < K < f@).
Let S denote the collection of all real numbers x in [a, b] such that f(x) < K.
Clearly S contains a, so S # and b is an upper bound for S. Hence, by
completeness property of R, S has least upper bound and let us denote this least
upper bound by c. Then a s c s b. We want to show that f(c) = K.
Since f is continuous on [a, b], f is continuous at c. Therefore, given E > 0, there

exists a 6 > 0 such that whenever x is in [a, b] and 1% c ( < 6, If(x)  f(c)( < G,
i.e., f(c)  & < f(x) < f(c) + E. ..
. (4)
If c # b, we can clearly assume that c +6 < b. Now c ier the least upper bound
of S. So c  6 is not 'an upper bound of S, Hence, there exists a y in S sucb'that

c  6 < y s c. Clearly 1 y cl < 6 and so by (4) above, we have

f(c) E < f(y) < f(c) + G.
Since y is in S, therefore f(y) < K. Thus, we get ,
39
f(c)  & < K Y
Limit and Continuity If now c = b then K  & < K < f(b) = f(c), i.e., K < f(c) + E. If c # b, then
c < .b; then there exists an x such that c < x < c + 6, c + 6, x E [a, b] and for
this x, f(x) < f(c) + E by (4) above. Since x > c, K r f(x), for otherwise x G
would be in S which will imply that c is not an upper bound of S. Thus, agdn we
have K 5 f(x) < f(c) + E.
In any case,
K < f(c) &+ ...(6)
Combining (5) and (ti), we get for every E > 0

f(c) E < K < f(c) + E
which proves that K = f(c), since G is arbitrary while K, f(c) are fixed. In fact,
when f(a) < K < f(b) and f(c) = K, then a < c < b.
L

Consider the function g defined by g(x) = f(x) x, x E [a, b]. The function
being the difference of two continuous functions, is continuous on [a, b]. Fcrqitkr,
since f(a), f(b) are in [a, b], f(a) > a (since f(a) # a, f(a) E [a, b]) and f(b) < b.
(Since f(b) # b, f(b) E [a, b]). So, g(a) > O and g(b) < 0. Hence, by Corollary
1, there exists a c in ]a, b[ such that g(c) = 0, i.e., f(c) = c: Hence, there exists a
c in [a, b] such that f(c) = c.
The above Corollary 1 helps us sometimes to locate some of the roots of
polynomials. We illustrate this with the following example.
EXAMPLE 5 : The equation x4 + 2x  11 = 0 has a real root lying between
1 and 2.
SOLUTION : The function f(x) = x4 + 2x  11 is a continuous function on the
closed interval [l, 21, f(1) =  8 and f(2) = 9. Hence, by Corollary I, there exists an
x, E 11, 2[ such that f(x,) = 0, i.e., x, is a real root of the equation
x4 + 2x  11 = 0 lying in the interval ]1, 2[.
Try the following exercises:
EXERCISE 5
Show that the equation 16x4 + 64x3  32x2  117 = 0 has a real root > 1.
EXERCISE 6

Prove that the equation cos x x = 0 possesses a root lying L the Interval
10, r 1.
EXERCISE 7
Prove that any polynomial of odd power with real coefficients has at least one real
mot.
EXERCISE 8

Show that the equation 4x3 9 x 2  6x + 2 = 0 has a real root in each of the
intervals ]'I, 0 1, ] 0, 1 [ and ] 2, 3 [.
That is whatever 6 > 0 we choose, there exist real numbers x, y such that

lx  y( < 6 but (f(x) f(y)( > G which proves that 6 is not unifirmly continuous.
But we know that f is a continuous function on R.
EXAMPLE 8 : In the abase example if we restrict the domain of f to be the
clawd interval [I, 11, theam show that f Is uniformly c o n ~ u o u on
s [I, I].
8
SOLUTION : Given E > 0, choose 6 < . If Ix  y 1 < 6 and x, y E [I, 11,
2
then using the triangle inequality for I Iwe get,
lf(x)  f(y)l = 1x2 y21 = tx + Y I Ix  Y I
6 (1x1 + IYI)
5 26 (since 1x1 s 1, lyl 5 1)
< E.
You should be able to solve the following exercises:
EXERCISE 9
Show that f(x) = xu, n > 1 is not uniformly continuous on K even tho~ngbfor
each n > 1, it is a continuous function on R.
EXERCISE 10 1
Show that the function f(x) =  for 6) c x < 1 is continuous for every x but not
uniformly o n 10, I[. X
EXERCISE 11 1
Show that the function f(x) = sin  is not uniformly continuous on the interval
X
10, I[ even though it is colntinuous in that interval.
EXERCISE 12
'
Show that f(x) = cx where c is a fixed nonzero real number is a uniformly
cbntinuous function on R.
We have seen in Exercise 10 that the function defined by f(x) = l/x on the open
interval 10, 1[ is not uniformly continuous on 10, 1[ even though it is a continuous
function o n 10, 1[. Similarly, in Example 7, the function f defined as f(x) = x2 is
continuoos on the entire real line R but is not uniformly continuous on R.
However, if we restrict the domain of this function to the bounded closed interval
[I, 11, then it is uniformly continuous. This property is not a special property of
the function f, where f(x) = x2 but is common to all continuous functions defined
on bounded closed intervals of the real line. We prove it in the following theorem.
THEOREM 5 : If f is a continuous function on. a bounded and closed interval
[a, b] then f is uniformly continuous on [a, b].
PROOF : Let f be a continuous function defined on the bounded closed interval
[a, b]. L a S be the set of all real numbers c in the interval [a, b] such that for a
given E > 0, there exists positive number d, such that for points xl, xz belonging
to closed interval [a, c],
I f(xl)  f(xz)1 < E whenever 
Jxl xz1 < d,.
(In other words f is uniformly continuous on the interval [a, c]. Clearly a E S so
that S is nonempty. Also b is an upper bound of S. Prom completeness property
of the real line S has least upper bound which we denote by k. k r b.
f is continuous at k. Hence given E > 0, there exists positive real number dk such
that
(f(x)  f(k) 1 < El2 whenever Ix  k 1 < dk . .(8) .
1
Since k is the least upper bound of S, k   dk is not an upper bound of S.
2
Therefore there exists a point c E S such that

k 1/2 dk < C S k. (9) ...
since c E S, from the definition of S we see that there exists d, such that
42 
( f(xl) E(x2)( < E whenever lxl  x2( < dc, xr, xz E [a, cl. ...(10)
Let d = min ((112) dk, d,) and b'  min. (k + (1/2) dk, b).
NOW let XI, x2 E Ia, b'l and 1x1  ql < d. Then if x,, x2 E [a, c ] , Ix,  x,] < d
s d, by the choice of and 4, then If(x11 f(xz)l < E by (10). If one of xl, xz is

not in fa, cl, then both XI, x2 belong to the interval ]k dk, k + dk!. For xl g

[a, c], implies b ' 2 X I > c > k  (112) dk > k dk'by (9) above. This means
xl 5 b' implies xl S k + (112) dk < k + dk by the choice of b'. i.e.
k  dk < k  (112) dk < X l < k 4 (1/2) dk < k + dk ...(11)
, +
Ixl  x21 < d implies that XI  (112) dk < x2 < x1 (1/2) dk since d r (1/2) dk
by the choice of d. Thus we get from (11) above that
k  d k < XI (1/2)dk < ~2 < x1+(1/2)dk < k +
'&

Then (11) and (12) show that xl,x2 E ]k dk, k + dk[.
Thus we get that 1 . ~ 1kJ < dk and Ix2 . kl < dk, which in turn implies, by (8)
above, that If(xl)  f(k)l < El2 and If(xz)  f(k)l .= E12. . '
Thus I f(xl)  f(xz)l 5 I f(x1)  f(k)l + If&)  f(xp)/ < €/2+ E/2 = E. In other
words, if Ixl  xzl < d and XI, xz are in [a,V] then /f(xl)  f(xz)( < E which
proves that b' E S i.e. b' 5 k. But k s; b' by the choice of b' si11ce.k is
k+(1/2) dk and k a b. Thus we get that k = b'. This can happen only when
k = b. For if k < b. i.e. k = b ' = min (k+(1/2) dk, b) < b, then it implies
that inin (k + (1/2) dk, b) = (k t (1/2) elk = b', where b ' E S i.e. k + (1/2) dk is
in S and is greater than k which is a contradiction to the fact that k is the 1.u.b of
S. Thus we have shown that k = b E S. In other words there exists a positive
number db (correspoilding to b) such that J x l xzl < db, XI, x2 E [a, b] implies
(f(xl) f(xz)( < E . Therefore f is uniformly continuous in [a, b].
You may note that uniform continuity always implies continuity but not conversely
(see Exercise 10). Converse is true when continuity is in the bounded closed
interval.
Before we end this unit, we state a theorem without proof regarding the continuity
of the inverse function of a continuous function. "
f(x) = sin x,
is both oneone and bnto. Besides f is continuous on
Theorem 6, the function
[ $,f] . Therefore, by
f :  11 $1
 Li, defined by
I fm'(x)= sin'x
is continuous on [I, I.].
10.4 SUMMARY
In this unit you have been introduced to the properties of continuous functions on
bounded closed intervals and you have seen the failure of these properties if the
intervals are not bounded and closed. In Section 10.2, these properties have been
studied. It has been proved that if a function f is continuous on a bounded and
closed interval, then it is bounded and it also attains its bounds. In the same
section we @rovedthe Intermediate Vdue Tbeorem that is if f is continuous on an
intervd containing two points a and by then f takes every value between f(a) and
f(b). In Section 10.3, the notion of u n i f o continuity
~ is discussed. .We have
proved that if a function f is .uniformly continuous in a set ,A, then it is
Limit and Continuity continuous in A. But converse is not w e . It has been proved that if a function is
i continous on a bounded and closed interval, then it is uniformly continuous in that
interval. These properties fail if the intervals are not bounded and closed. This has
been illustrated with a few examples.
El) Continuity at any point c of 1cw, m[ follow easily because (f(x)  f(c)J = Ix  cl
< E if JX  CI < 6 where 6 = E.
Range of f = ]a, m[ which is not bounded and so f is not bounded.
E2) The function F and G given by F(x) = 1 and G(x) = ( ~  2 ) ~V, x €12, 3[, are
*
continuous and G(x) s 0 in 12, 3[ and,. so,
F(x) 1 1
=  i.e., f(x) =  is continuous in 12, 3[. Its range 11, m[
G(x) (x2)2 (x2)l
is not bounded.
E3) Continuity of f is proved in Unit 9.
Range of f = 10, I[.
g.1.b. f = 0 & 1 .u.b. f = 1 and they are not attained.
E4) Continuity o f f can be proved easily, (Refer Unit 9) g.1.b. o f f is 0 which is
not attained by f,
E5) f(x) = 16x4 + 64x4 32x2  117 
being a polynomial is a continuous function on the interval
E6) Let f(x) = cos x x. Then f is a continuous knction on [0, n].
f(0) = 1 > 0 and fin) =  ( 1 + n) < 0. Hence there exists an x in ] 0, x[
such that f(x) = 0. i.e. there exists a real root for cos xx = 0 between 0
and x.
E7). Let f(x) = azntl xht' + ...... + a, be a polynomial of odd degree, a,,,, 0. It is a *
continuous function on the whole of the real line R. We will suppose without
loss of generality that > 0.
f(x)
'
Then, lim
XMO

xZntl
= > 0.
~ e n c ewe can find a real number b large enough so that f(b) > 0.
then f is a continuous fhnction on the whole real line R and hence on the
intervals [I, 01, [O, 11 and [2, 31 also.
f(1) = 49 + 6+2 < 0 and f(0) = 2 s 0.
Hence there exists a root x, in the interval 11. Cl[ s.t. f(xJ = 0. Again,
Hence there exists a root xi in the interval ]0,1[ s.t. f(x,) = 0. Properties oTContinuoua
f(2) = 32  36  12 + 2 < 0 Fuoctions
f(3) = 108  81  18 t 2 0.
Therefore, again, there exists a root x, in the interval ] 2,3 [.
n
~ g ) f(x) = x , n > 1. Already we have proved in Example 7, that f(x) = xZ is
continuous on R but not uniformly continuous.
The proof for a general n > 1 is very much similar.
Let now f(x) = xn, 6 > 0 be arbitrarily chosen and kept futed. Let E be any
positive number. Choose x > 1, where
2&
i.e. n >  . Take y = x + 612, then (xy( = E/2 < S and x, y > 1.
6
2&
> (612) n > jN2)  = e.
S
Therefore f is not uniformly continuous.
1
E10) f(x) = , for 0 x < 1.
X
=
Let a be fixed such that 0 .< a < 1. Then xn (0 < xn < 1) converges to a
1 1
implies that 
x;
converges to  , hence f is continuous at a, So, a ~ ] 0 , 1 [
. a
being arbitrary, f is continous on 10, I[. Let 6' > 0 be an arbitrarily chosen
positive number and kept fixed.
1 Take
1 1
x= , Then
n7c = (nn t ~ 1 2 )
If(x)  f(y)l = 1.
So, for 6 > 0, choose n so that x < 6. Then, x, y E 10, 6[, implies that
(i)
1
f (x) = xcos , x # 0, a s x
X
 0.
1x1
(ii) f (x) =  , x # 0, a s x +m
X
sin x
(iii) f (x) = , x # 0, a s x  00
1 + e 'IX
1  x when x 4 1
(iii) f (x) = , asx1.
2xwhenx > 1.
3. Test whether or not the limit exists for the following:
3  x whenx > 1
(i) f(x) = l w h e n x = 1 , a s x  1.
2x when x < 1.
(ii) f(x) =
x 4

2
x2 4 4
, x E R, asx  1.
(iii) f(x) =
I'2TF 2
X
,.x # O a s x  O
4. Discuss the continuity of the followirlg functions at the points noted against
each.
(i) f(x) =
x2 for x z 1.
0 for x = 1.
asx 1.
x 4
2
(iii) f(x) = 
x 1
when x # 1.
(iv) f(x) =
(1 ; x)'" if x # 0
ifx = O
asx0.
1
x2 sin  if x z 0
if x = 0
sin x
for x f 0
for x Z 0
C 1 for x = o
9. Give an example of the fqllowing;
(i) A function which is nowhere continuous but its absolute value is
everywhere continuous.
(ii) A function which is continuous at one point only.
(iii) A linear function which is continuous and satisf~sthe equation
f(x + y) = f(x) + f(y).
(iv) Two uniform continuous functions whose product is not uniformly
continuous.
10. State whether or not the following are true or false.
(i) A polynomial function is continuous at every point of its domain.
(ii) A rational function is continuous at every point at which it is defined.
(iii) If a function is continuous, then it is always uniformly continu~us,
(iv) The functions ex and log x are inverse functions for x > 0 and both are
continuous for each x > 0.
' (v) The functions cos x and cos'x are continuous for all real x.
(vi) Every continuous function is bounded.
(vz) A continuoas function Is always monotonic.
(viii) The function d n x is monotonic as we!l as csntilalnous for x E 0, 
(ix) The function cos x is continuous as weil as monstonic for every
[ 3.
x E R.
(x) The function 1x1, x E R is continuous.
A
(ii) lim f(x) = Iim  = 1.
xQ, x m X
So lim f(x) = 0.
x or)
1
2. ji) 
26'
(ii) 1.
(ii) lirn f(x) = 0 and lim f(x) = 2. So lim, f(x) does not exist.
x1 xI+ x 1
9. [ f(x) = 1
=  I
if x is rational
if x is irrational
(ii) [ f(x) = x if x is rational
= X if x is hratiational
the only point of continuity is 0.
(iii) f(X) = CX, V x E R where C is a fixed constant.
(iv) f(x) = x, g(x) = sin x, V x E R
Both f(x) and g(x) are unifowy continuous but their product
f(x) g(x) = x sin x
is not uniformly wntinuous on R.