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A result that is not exact but is near enough to the correct result for some specified purpose.
A procedure for obtaining such a result.



replacement of certain mathematical objects by others which are in one sense or another close to the initial objects. Approximation makes it possible to study the numerical characteristics and qualitative properties of the object, reducing the problem to a study of simpler or more convenient objects—for example, objects whose characteristics are easily computed or whose properties are already known. The theory of numbers studies Diophantine approximations—in particular, approximations of irrational numbers by rational numbers. Approximations of curves, surfaces, spaces, and mappings are investigated in geometry and topology. Some branches of mathematics are wholly devoted to approximations, as, for example, the approximation and interpolation of functions and numerical methods of analysis. The role of approximation in mathematics is continually growing. Presently, approximation can be viewed as one of the basic concepts of mathematics.


References in periodicals archive ?
Local conditions and courier costs may vary, but I will attempt to give you a ball park figure for each of the three types of accountant previously mentioned.
Graham would not divulge details of the deal except to say: ``There is a ball park figure that has been well mentioned and that's not very far out as regards the fee.
Then the boss asks you to "put together a ball park figure to get the system installed.
This is an indicative cost/ Ball park figure for reference to enable the PMC to quote for the job).
For their New Zealand counterparts - the likes of Dan Carter and Richie McCaw - you're looking at PS500,000 as a ball park figure, including commercial deals, with the NZRFU's shirt sponsorship deal with insurance giant AIG having boosted the coffers.
We have a ball park figure of how much we have to spend and now we just have to highlight everything we want to do and what needs to be done.
Not any more, a 2005 spec Aprilia RSV Mille can be yours for pounds 8,572, which is right in the ball park figure for a one-litre sports bike.