Meaning of Accuracy

What is Accuracy:

Precision is the delimitation of a concept, variables or measurements with minimal errors.

Precision derives from Latin praecisio that indicates something that is well cut and delimited.

In the philosophical sense, precision is the mental abstraction that separates and defines concepts in order to differentiate them from others. For example, the difference between liberty and debauchery has a similar basis but liberty is limited in respect for others while libertinism is defined by the abuse of liberty.

Accuracy refers to the execution of something the way it was planned, such as military precision. It can also be used to refer to an object that performs exactly the way you want, such as a precision knife or precision balance.

Accuracy in measuring instruments

In physics, chemistry and science in general, precision refers to the degree of closeness that the results obtained from the control of the same conditions present.

In this sense, precision is associated with the sensitivity of the instrument. The greater the precision of the instrument, the closer the results will be in relation to the different measurements made with the same parameters.

An instrument with precision must be correctly calibrated according to the variables presented by the environment in which it is used. The field that studies calibration procedures, measurement methods and their different instruments is called metrology.

In chemistry, for example, the calibration of instruments such as the analytical balance to measure weight, and the dynamometer, to measure the mass of an object or substance, are essential to obtain precision results.

See also:

  • Analytical balance.
  • Dynamometer.

Precision and accuracy

In general, the words precision and accuracy can be used synonymously. In contrast, in scientific, statistical and measurement terms, the concepts of precision and accuracy have different meanings.

Precision refers to the closeness of the values ​​obtained by applying the same parameters, on the other hand, accuracy is the degree of coincidence between the mean value of the results obtained with the value defined as a reference.

For example, if we search through a digital positioning system: “Zócalo, Ciudad de México” defining the most important square of the city as the place of reference, the system can yield results of the Zócalo metro, the historic center, the streets nearby, a restaurant, a newspaper, etc. The result is accurate if you get closer to the landmark and would not be accurate the further you go from the square. The result is exact if it indicates the Plaza de la Constitución in Mexico City.

Accuracy in a text

Precision is part of the writing and style techniques of a text. Especially in expository, informational and scientific texts, precision is important for the clarity and objectivity of the information.

The precision of a text indicates the correct use of grammar, punctuation, and spelling. In addition, special care must be taken in the use of corresponding terms that accurately express the intended meaning.

All text must be clear, precise and concise, that is, without ambiguity, exactness in the expression of thought and words and a brief exposition of what is strictly necessary.

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