American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. The act of abstracting or the state of having been abstracted.
- n. An abstract concept, idea, or term.
- n. An abstract quality.
- n. Preoccupation; absent-mindedness.
- n. An abstract work of art.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. The act of taking away or separating; the act of withdrawing, or the state of being withdrawn; withdrawal, as of a part from a whole, or of one thing from another. Rarely applied to the physical act of taking or removing except in a derogatory sense: as, the abstraction (dishonest removal, larceny) of goods from a warehouse.
- n. The act of abstracting or concentrating the attention on a part of a complex idea and neglecting the rest or supposing it away; especially, that variety of this procedure by which we pass from a more to a less determinate concept, from the particular to the general; the act or process of refining or sublimating.
- n. A concept which is the product of an abstracting process; a metaphysical concept; hence, often, an idea which cannot lead to any practical result; a theoretical, impracticable notion; a formality; a fiction of metaphysics.
- n. Inattention to present objects; the state of being engrossed with any matter to the exclusion of everything else; absence of mind: as, a fit of abstraction.
- n. In distillation, the separation of volatile parts from those which are fixed. It is chiefly used with relation to a fluid that is repeatedly poured upon any substance in a retort and distilled off, to change its state or the nature of its composition.
- n. In geology, the tapping of the head waters of one stream by another the erosive action of which is more rapid.
- n. chemistry A separation of volatile parts by the act of distillation.
- n. An idea of an unrealistic or visionary nature.
- n. The result of mentally abstracting an idea; the results of said process.
- n. geology The merging of two river valleys by the larger of the two deepening and widening so much so, as to assimilate the smaller.
- n. computing Any generalization technique that ignores or hides details to capture some kind of commonality between different instances for the purpose of controlling the intellectual complexity of engineered systems, particularly software systems.
- n. computing Any intellectual construct produced through the technique of abstraction.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. The act of abstracting, separating, or withdrawing, or the state of being withdrawn; withdrawal.
- n. (Metaph.) The act process of leaving out of consideration one or more properties of a complex object so as to attend to others; analysis. So, also, when it considers
whiteness, softness, virtue, existence, as separate from any particular objects.
- n. An idea or notion of an abstract, or theoretical nature.
- n. A separation from worldly objects; a recluse life.
- n. Absence or absorption of mind; inattention to present objects.
- n. Modern The taking surreptitiously for one's own use part of the property of another; purloining.
- n. (Chem.) A separation of volatile parts by the act of distillation.
- n. a general concept formed by extracting common features from specific examples
- n. a concept or idea not associated with any specific instance
- n. an abstract painting
- n. the process of formulating general concepts by abstracting common properties of instances
- n. the act of withdrawing or removing something
- n. preoccupation with something to the exclusion of all else
“Under the rubric of water resource development, dam building and river fragmentation are the main factors threatening biodiversity, while water abstraction is the main threat to human water security.”
“Boundaries are ubiquitous, and I am convinced the ability to detect boundaries/edges at ever higher levels of abstraction is the key to real fluid intelligence and concept formation.”
“Every level of abstraction is accurate, new, useful, and nonobvious.”
“If levels of abstraction is about an economic quid pro quo, then litigants can supply relevant information: the economic effects/incentives of patent.”
“Taking this sort of thing to abstraction is their job.”
“Dewey continues: "The reference to" in us "is as much an abstraction from the total experience, as on the other side it would be to resolve the picture into mere aggregations of molecules and atoms.”
“Teaching suspicion of abstraction is a key component of bourgeois pedagogy.”
“Understanding and abstraction is what people do. stunney: Such as you did the other day when you tried in the most diabolically cunning way to constrain a conclusion concerning minds by defining them in terms of material brains.”
“Hubbard argued that if NASA was to have any chance of self-reform, these people would have to be confronted with reality, not in abstraction but in the most tangible way possible.”
“Actually, I think escape from abstraction is one of the attractions of Mexico, especially data and management abstraction.”
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