My question is to why the variable "m" was chosen to represent the slope of a linear equation. I always told my class to think of "m" for "m"ountain slope. But what is the real reason for this?
Thank You Kindly,
This is a question we have received a number of times and the short answer is that we don't know. One of our standard references on mathematical symbols is "Earliest Uses of Various Mathematical Symbols", a resource maintained by Jeff Miller, a teacher at Gulf High School in New Port Richey, Florida (The URL is http://members.aol.com/jeff570/mathsym.html.) If you go to his site, choose "Symbols used in geometry" and scroll down the page to "slope" you will find some historical notes that end with the paragraph