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The term inverse is normally used in the context of a function of an operation. The inverse of a function "undoes" whatever it is that the first function does.

There may be none, one or many (including infinitely many) inverses - depending on the nature of the first function. For example,

  • if the first function is multiply by 0, there is no inverse.
  • if the first is double a number the (single) inverse is halve the number.
  • if the first is square the number, the inverse are finding the negative and positive square roots.
  • if the first is calculate the tangent of an angle, the inverse is calculate the arctangent of the value, and add n*pi radians (n*180 degrees) for the infinitely many integers values for n.
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Q: What does inverse mean in math terms?
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