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If I am integrating a definite integral, sometimes it is possible to end up with a negative value - but I thought a definite integral was an area, so what happens if my result is negative?

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http://rdsrc.us/CWGwJg

http://rdsrc.us/Ifx2A1

The area can even be zero:

http://rdsrc.us/ka98W8

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http://www.teacherschoice.com.au/Maths_Library/Calculus/area_under_a_curve.htm

As a summary areas under the x-axis are negative and above the x-axis are positive.

So integrating a function like y=x from -3 to 3 will yield zero because the negative areas exactly cancels the positive area.

Hope this hleps,

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