Have you seen graphs in the newspapers, television, magazines, books etc.? The purpose of the graph is to show numerical facts in visual form so that they can be understood quickly, easily and clearly. Thus graphs are visual representations of data collected. Data can also be presented in the form of a table; however a graphical presentation is easier to understand. This is true in particular when there is a trend or comparison to be shown. We have already seen some types of graphs. Let us quickly recall them here.
A line graph consists of bits of line segments joined consecutively. Sometimes the graph may be a whole unbroken line. Such a graph is called a linear graph. To draw such a line we need to locate some points on the graph sheet. We will now learn how to locate points conveniently on a graph sheet.
In everyday life, you might have observed that the more you use a facility, the more you pay for it. If more electricity is consumed, the bill is bound to be high. If less electricity is used, then the bill will be easily manageable. This is an instance where one quantity affects another. Amount of electric bill depends on the quantity of electricity used. We say that the quantity of electricity is an independent variable (or sometimes control variable) and the amount of electric bill is the dependent variable. The relation between such variables can be shown through a graph.