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On the Concept of Frequency in Signals Processing: A discussion
  • Moisés Soto-Bajo ,
  • Andrés Fraguela Collar ,
  • Javier Herrera-Vega
Moisés Soto-Bajo
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Andrés Fraguela Collar
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Javier Herrera-Vega
Benemérita Universidad Autónoma de Puebla

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

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Frequency is a central concept in Mathematics, Physics, and Signal Processing. It is the main tool for describing the oscillatory behavior of signals, which is usually argued to be the manifestation of some of their key features, depending on their nature. For instance, this is the case of Electroencephalographic signals. Hence, frequency is substantially present in the most common methodologies for analyzing signals, as the Fourier Analysis or the Time-Frequency Analysis.
However, in spite of its importance as a keystone in Signal Processing, and its seemingly simple meaning, its mathematical foundation is not as straightforward as it may seem at first glance. A naive interpretation of the different mathematical concepts modelling frequency can be misleading, as their actual meanings essentially differ from the intuitive notion which are supposed to represent.
In our opinion, this circumstance should be taken into account to develop and apply appropriate signal analysis and processing tools in some applications. In the current text we discuss this topic, with the main goal to draw the attention of the mathematical and engineering community to this point, often overlooked.