An Owners' Manual for the Discrete Fourier Transform

Ranked #13 in Numerical Analysis

Just as a prism separates white light into its component bands of colored light, so the discrete Fourier transform (DFT) is used to separate a signal into its constituent frequencies. Just as a pair of sunglasses reduces the glare of white light, permitting only the softer green light to pass, so the DFT may be used to modify a signal to achieve a desired effect. In fact, by analyzing the component frequencies of a signal or any system, the DFT can be used in an astonishing variety of problems. Among the applications of the DFT are digital signal processing, oil and gas exploration, medical... more

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