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ARTICLE ORIGINS slope
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{{About|the mathematical term}}{{for|the grade (incline or gradient or pitch or slope) of any physical feature|Grade (slope)}}(File:Wiki slope in 2d.svg|right|thumb|Slope: m=left( frac{Delta y}{Delta x} right)=tan( theta ) ...)In mathematics, the slope or gradient of a line is a number that describes both the direction and the steepness of the line.WEB,weblink Oxford Concise Dictionary of Mathematics, Gradient, C., Clapham, J., Nicholson, Addison-Wesley, 2009, 348, 1 September 2013, yes,weblink" title="web.archive.org/web/20131029203826weblink">weblink 29 October 2013, Slope is often denoted by the letter m; there is no clear answer to the question why the letter m is used for slope, but its earliest use in English appears in O'Brien (1844){{citation|first=M.|last=O'Brien|title=A Treatise on Plane Co-Ordinate Geometry or the Application of the Method of Co-Ordinates in the Solution of Problems in Plane Geometry|place=Cambridge, England|publisher=Deightons|year=1844}} who wrote the equation of a straight line as {{nobreak|1="y = mx + b"}} and it can also be found in Todhunter (1888){{citation|first=I.|last=Todhunter|title=Treatise on Plane Co-Ordinate Geometry as Applied to the Straight Line and Conic Sections|place=London|publisher=Macmillan|year=1888}} who wrote it as "y = mx + c".WEB, Weisstein, Eric W., Slope, MathWorld--A Wolfram Web Resource,weblink 30 October 2016, no,weblink" title="web.archive.org/web/20161206182915weblink">weblink 6 December 2016, Slope is calculated by finding the ratio of the "vertical change" to the "horizontal change" between (any) two distinct points on a line. Sometimes the ratio is expressed as a quotient ("rise over run"), giving the same number for every two distinct points on the same line. A line that is decreasing has a negative "rise". The line may be practical - as set by a road surveyor, or in a diagram that models a road or a roof either as a description or as a plan.The steepness, incline, or grade of a line is measured by the absolute value of the slope. A slope with a greater absolute value indicates a steeper line. The direction of a line is either increasing, decreasing, horizontal or vertical.
• A line is increasing if it goes up from left to right. The slope is positive, i.e. m>0.
• A line is decreasing if it goes down from left to right. The slope is negative, i.e. m

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