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## precision

precision The number of digits to which numbers are represented. For example, if p bits are allocated to the mantissa in the representation of floating-point numbers used in a particular computer, then in that computer floating-point numbers have p bits of precision. In general, the precision of floating-point numbers is proportional to their value (i.e. relative) whereas the precision of fixed-point numbers is absolute (independent of the value).

It is important not to confuse the term precision with accuracy. For example, the number 3.142 8571

has eight-decimal digit precision, irrespective of what it represents. If this number represents 22/7 then it is also accurate to eight decimal digits but if it represents the irrational number π then it is accurate only to three decimal digits.

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## precision

pre·ci·sion / priˈsizhən/ • n. the quality, condition, or fact of being exact and accurate: the deal was planned and executed with military precision. ∎  [as adj.] marked by or adapted for accuracy and exactness: a precision instrument. ∎  technical refinement in a measurement, calculation, or specification, esp. as represented by the number of digits given: this has brought an unprecedented degree of precision to the business of dating rocks | a precision of six decimal figures. Compare with accuracy.

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"precision." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Encyclopedia.com. 17 Dec. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"precision." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Encyclopedia.com. (December 17, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/precision-0

"precision." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Retrieved December 17, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/precision-0

## precision

precision See ERRORS.

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"precision." A Dictionary of Earth Sciences. . Encyclopedia.com. 17 Dec. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"precision." A Dictionary of Earth Sciences. . Encyclopedia.com. (December 17, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/precision

"precision." A Dictionary of Earth Sciences. . Retrieved December 17, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/precision

## precision

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