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(Not recommended) Construct inline object

inline is not recommended. Use Anonymous Functions instead.


f = inline(expr) constructs an inline function object from the MATLAB® expression contained in expr. The input argument to the inline function is automatically determined by searching expr for an isolated lower case alphabetic character, other than i or j, that is not part of a word formed from several alphabetic characters. If no such character exists, x is used. If the character is not unique, the one closest to x is used. If two characters are found, the one later in the alphabet is chosen.


f = inline(expr,arg1,arg2,…,argN) constructs an inline function whose input arguments are specified by arg1,arg2,…,argN. Multicharacter symbol names may be used.

f = inline(expr,N), where N is a scalar, constructs an inline function whose input arguments are x and P1,P2,…,PN.


Two Independent Variables

This call to inline defines the function f to be dependent on two variables, alpha and x:

f = inline('sin(alpha*x)')
f =
     Inline function:
     f(alpha,x) = sin(alpha*x)

If inline does not return the desired function variables or if the function variables are in the wrong order, you can specify the desired variables explicitly with the inline argument list.

g = inline('sin(alpha*x)','x','alpha')
g =

     Inline function:
     g(x,alpha) = sin(alpha*x)

Input Arguments

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Function expression, specified as a character vector.

Argument list, specified as a comma-separated list of character vectors.

Number of arguments other than x, specified as a non-negative integer scalar.


  • Three commands related to inline allow you to examine an inline function object and determine how it was created.

  • char(fun) converts the inline function into a character array. This is identical to formula(fun).

  • argnames(fun) returns the names of the input arguments of the inline object fun as a cell array of character vectors.

  • formula(fun) returns the formula for the inline object fun.

  • A fourth command vectorize(fun) inserts a . before any ^, * or /' in the formula for fun. The result is a vectorized version of the inline function.

Version History

Introduced before R2006a

See Also