It has now become a rather standard exercise, with availble technology, to construct graphs to consider the equation
and to overlay several graphs of
for different values of a, b, or c as the other two are held constant. From these graphs discussion of the patterns for the roots of
can be followed. For example, if we set
for b = 3, 2, 1, 0, 1, 2, 3, and overlay the graphs, the following picture is obtained.
We can discuss the "movement" of a parabola as b is changed. The parabola always passes through the same point on the yaxis ( the point (0,1) with this equation). For b < 2 the parabola will intersects the xaxis in two points with positive x values (i.e. the original equation will have two real roots, both positive). For b = 2, the parabola is tangent to the xaxis and so the original equation has one real and positive root at the point of tangency. For 2 < b < 2, the parabola does not intersect the xaxis  the original equation has no real roots. Similarly for b = 2 the parabola is tangent to the xaxis (one real negative root) and for b > 2, the parabola intersets the xaxis twice to show two negative real roots for each b.
Now consider the locus of the vertices of the set of parabolas graphed from
We can calculate the ycoordinates using the following:
































By plotting the above points, we can show that the locus is the parabola:
We can then generalize that since the locus is the parabola
then the locus of the parabola can be found by substituting
into the following equation
and the graph is now an inverted parabola about the yaxis at the point y = 1.
Consider again the equation
We can also rephrase this equation like this:
When we graph this relation in the xb planewe will get the following graph:
If we take any particular value of b, say b = 3, and overlay this equation on the graph we add a line parallel to the xaxis. If it intersects the curve in the xb plane the intersection points correspond to the roots of the original equation for that value of b. We have the following graph.
For each value of b we select, we get a horizontal line. It is clear on a single graph that we get two negative real roots of the original equation when b > 2, one negative real root when b = 2, no real roots for 2 < b < 2, One positive real root when b = 2, and two positive real roots when b < 2.
Consider the case when c =  1 rather than + 1.
In the following example the equation
is considered.
Now if the equation is graphed in the xc plane, it is easy to see that the curve will be a parabola. For each value of c considered, its graph will be a line crossing the parabola in 0, 1, or 2 points  the intersections being at the roots of the orignal equation at that value of c. In the graph, the graph of c = 1 is shown. The equation
will have two negative roots  approximately 0.2 and 4.8.
There is one value of c where the equation will have only 1 real root  at c = 6.25. For c > 6.25 the equation will have no real roots and for c < 6.25 the equation will have two roots, both negative for 0 < c < 6.25, one negative and one 0 when c = 0 and one negative and one positive when c < 0.