What does it mean to interpolate a data?

1 Answer
May 18, 2018

Using a best-fit line to estimate the value of one thing given the value of another.

Say you had a scatter graph and the values had a fairly good linear shape with little scattering, you could estimate (or given the data and a means of calculating, work it out) what the best-fit line. The best-fit line is the linear line which shows the relationship between two sets of data while reducing the amount of scattering on the graph.

Most likely, the best-fit line will have values on either side that will be slightly off the line, and we may not have data for one value.

For example, say a best-fit line followed the equation #y=1.4x+3.5#, we could use this equation to estimate values within a range of data.

So, say we had values of #y# from #x=10# to #x=40# and we wanted what #x=32# was despite not having it, we could use the equation to estimate what it might be.

We only use interpolation to estimate values within a range of data because extreme values, like #x<0# or #x>100# might follow a different pattern..