The definitions I've found for precision relate to the repeatability of a measurement. However, there appear to be at least two aspects of precision, one of which is not addressed by the repeatability criterion, and I'm not sure what it is called. It's related to the "significant figures" of a measurement, but I don't know if that's a formal name or not.
As an example, imagine an object 11.9 inches long, and a ruler with markings only at every inch, with no subdivisions. When the ruler is checked against a high-precision standard, the markings are found to be correct within 0.001 inch. The precision of the measurement can be made arbitrarily small, as good practice with the ruler will yield a result of 12 inches every single time. 10,000 repeat measurements will all be 12 inches, thus the length can be reported as 12.00 with a precision of 0.01, but this is wrong. A ruler with markings every tenth of an inch would clearly show the length of the measured object to be 11.9 inches. What property is there more of in the ruler with markings every tenth of an inch? Anthony Argyriou 15:12, 22 April 2007 (CDT)
Link to "measure"?
- Yes, and I've added it to a new See also section. (What are we calling those again?) However, as this article now stands, there isn't a whole lot of common ground between the two; the mathematical concept of a "measure" is not that close to the physical concept of measurement. Neither are very close to the measure (music). Anthony Argyriou 00:38, 23 April 2007 (CDT)
- In mathematics, measure is a concept generalizing length, area, volume and so forth. But more importantly, it is a refinement of the familiar definitions (such as area = length times width) to provide nice limiting properties. You cn think of it as a technical device allowing the methods of calculus to be extended to broader class of problems. If there is a cross link, I'd consider "Not to be conused with Measure (mathematics)". Greg Woodhouse 06:20, 23 April 2007 (CDT)