set

5 ENTRIES FOUND:

set

In mathematics and logic, any collection of objects (elements), which may be mathematical (e.g., numbers, functions) or not. The intuitive idea of a set is probably even older than that of number. Members of a herd of animals, for example, could be matched with stones in a sack without members of either set actually being counted. The notion extends into the infinite. For example, the set of integers from 1 to 100 is finite, whereas the set of all integers is infinite. A set is commonly represented as a list of all its members enclosed in braces. A set with no members is called an empty, or null, set, and is denoted . Because an infinite set cannot be listed, it is usually represented by a formula that generates its elements when applied to the elements of the set of counting numbers. Thus, {2x

This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.
For the full entry on set, visit Britannica.com.

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