# Columbia Encyclopedia

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## mathematics

(Encyclopedia)mathematics, deductive study of numbers, geometry, and various abstract constructs, or structures; the latter often “abstract” the features common to several models derived from the empirical, or ...

## abacus, in mathematics

(Encyclopedia)CE5 Chinese abacus: Numbers are represented by moving beads to the central crossbar. abacus ăbˈəkəs, əbăkˈ– [key], in mathematics, simple device for performing arithmetic calculations. Th...

## dimension, in mathematics

(Encyclopedia)dimension, in mathematics, number of parameters or coordinates required locally to describe points in a mathematical object (usually geometric in character). For example, the space we inhabit is three...

## e, in mathematics

(Encyclopedia)e, in mathematics, irrational number occurring widely in mathematics and science, approximately equal to the value 2.71828; it is the base of natural, or Naperian, logarithms. The number e is defined ...

## division, in mathematics

(Encyclopedia)division, fundamental operation in arithmetic; the inverse of multiplication. Division may be indicated by the symbol ÷, as in 15 ÷ 3, or simply by a fraction, 15/3. The number that is being divided...

## cone, in mathematics

(Encyclopedia)CE5 Cone cone or conical surface, in mathematics, surface generated by a moving line (the generator) that passes through a given fixed point (the vertex) and continually intersects a given fixed c...

## combinations, in mathematics

(Encyclopedia)combinations, in mathematics: see probability. ...

## set, in mathematics

(Encyclopedia)CE5 Union and intersection of sets A and B: The union of A and B, A∪B, contains all members belonging to either A or B. The intersection of A and B, A∩B, contains all members common to both A a...

## power, in mathematics

(Encyclopedia)power, in mathematics: see exponent. ...

## proof, in mathematics

(Encyclopedia)proof, in mathematics, finite sequence of propositions each of which is either an axiom or follows from preceding propositions by one of the rules of logical inference (see symbolic logic). Mathematic...