# Finding the minimum of a function on a closed interval with python

When working with Python, it is often necessary to find the minimum of a function on a closed interval. This can be achieved in several ways, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. In this article, we will explore three different approaches to solving this problem.

## Approach 1: Using a Loop

One way to find the minimum of a function on a closed interval is by using a loop. We can start by defining the interval and the function we want to minimize:

``````
interval = [a, b]
def f(x):
# function definition here
``````

Next, we can iterate over the interval using a loop and keep track of the minimum value found:

``````
min_value = float('inf')
for x in interval:
if f(x) < min_value:
min_value = f(x)
``````

Finally, we can print the minimum value:

``````
print("The minimum value is:", min_value)
``````

## Approach 2: Using the built-in min() function

An alternative approach is to use the built-in min() function in Python. This function returns the minimum value from a given iterable. We can use it by passing our function as the key parameter:

``````
min_value = min(interval, key=f)
print("The minimum value is:", min_value)
``````

## Approach 3: Using the scipy library

If we are working with more complex functions or need more advanced optimization techniques, we can use the scipy library. This library provides a wide range of optimization algorithms, including methods for finding the minimum of a function on a closed interval. Here is an example using the minimize_scalar() function:

``````
from scipy.optimize import minimize_scalar

result = minimize_scalar(f, bounds=interval)
min_value = result.fun
print("The minimum value is:", min_value)
``````

After exploring these three approaches, it is clear that using the scipy library provides the most robust and flexible solution. It offers a wide range of optimization algorithms and allows for more complex functions and constraints. Therefore, approach 3 using the scipy library is the recommended option for finding the minimum of a function on a closed interval in Python.

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### 2 Responses

1. Seven Terrell says:

Approach 1: Looping? Thats so old-school! Why not just use the min() function? #EfficiencyMatters

2. Darren says:

Approach 2 seems easier, but what about performance? Is it as efficient as Approach 3? 🤔