Gradient

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For other uses see: Gradient (disambiguation)
The values of the function are shown in black and white. The darker areas have higher values. The blue arrows show the gradient.

The gradient measures how steep a curve is. On a graph of the function, it is the slope of the tangent of that curve. More generally, it is a vector that points in the direction in which the function grows the fastest. Its coordinates are partial derivatives of that function.