Can someone please help me. I have a function

f[x_] := 3*(x - Pi/2)*(Sin[4*x])^2 + 2*Cos[3*x]

and I need to find coefficients of function

g[x_]:= c1 + c2*x + c3*x^2 + c4*x^4

so that maximum absolute error of ( Abs[f[x] - g[x]]) is minimized. On the range of 0 <= x <= Pi.

Please help me, I'm desperate.

  • $\begingroup$ Look up NonLinearModelFit in the docs. $\endgroup$ Jun 23, 2017 at 10:48
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    $\begingroup$ That is for least squared - method, I need to find function so the maximum absolute error is minimized $\endgroup$ Jun 23, 2017 at 11:11
  • $\begingroup$ FindFit has an option called NormFunction, I think that is what you are after. $\endgroup$ Jun 23, 2017 at 11:29
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    $\begingroup$ Might want to check the Remez method. $\endgroup$ Jun 23, 2017 at 20:02
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    $\begingroup$ @MariusLadegårdMeyer Both FindFit and NonLinearModelFit seem to require one to supply data points. Are you suggesting OP generate data points? $\endgroup$
    – jjc385
    Jun 24, 2017 at 0:02

1 Answer 1


Sorry, I was away from my computer and could not write up an answer right away. I think this is what you want:

Generate some data points that FindFit can work with:

data = Table[{x, f[x]}, {x, 0, Pi, Pi/1000}];

Use FindFit with the infinity norm (see the docs of NormFunction for an example):

bestfit = FindFit[N@data, g[x], {c1, c2, c3, c4}, x, NormFunction -> (Norm[#1, Infinity] & )]

{c1 -> 0.880948, c2 -> -8.93938, c3 -> 6.25143, c4 -> -0.385789}

Notice that it is different when least squares is used:

FindFit[N@data, g[x], {c1, c2, c3, c4}, x]

{c1 -> 1.4222, c2 -> -10.3303, c3 -> 6.92248, c4 -> -0.409044}

Store the best-fit expression:

h = g[x] /. bestfit;


Plot[{f[x], h}, {x, 0, Pi}]

enter image description here

  • $\begingroup$ While it seems somewhat inelegant (and dangerous, if one is not sufficiently careful) to generate data points from an exact function, I don't see another way to do it. +1 $\endgroup$
    – jjc385
    Jun 24, 2017 at 22:32

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