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DIFFERENTIAL

Pronunciation (US): Play

 Dictionary entry overview: What does differential mean? 

DIFFERENTIAL (noun)
  The noun DIFFERENTIAL has 3 senses:

1. the result of mathematical differentiation; the instantaneous change of one quantity relative to another; df(x)/dx
2. a quality that differentiates between similar things
3. a bevel gear that permits rotation of two shafts at different speeds; used on the rear axle of automobiles to allow wheels to rotate at different speeds on curves

  Familiarity information: DIFFERENTIAL used as a noun is uncommon.


DIFFERENTIAL (adjective)
  The adjective DIFFERENTIAL has 2 senses:

1. relating to or showing a difference
2. involving or containing one or more derivatives

  Familiarity information: DIFFERENTIAL used as an adjective is rare.


 Dictionary entry details 


DIFFERENTIAL (noun)


Sense 1differential [BACK TO TOP]

Meaning:

The result of mathematical differentiation; the instantaneous change of one quantity relative to another; df(x)/dx

Classified under:

Nouns denoting cognitive processes and contents

Synonyms:

first derivative; differential coefficient; differential; derived function; derivative

Hypernyms ("differential" is a kind of...):

calculation; computation; figuring; reckoning (problem solving that involves numbers or quantities)

Hyponyms (each of the following is a kind of "differential"):

curvature (the rate of change (at a point) of the angle between a curve and a tangent to the curve)

partial; partial derivative (the derivative of a function of two or more variables with respect to a single variable while the other variables are considered to be constant)


Sense 2differential [BACK TO TOP]

Meaning:

A quality that differentiates between similar things

Classified under:

Nouns denoting attributes of people and objects

Hypernyms ("differential" is a kind of...):

difference (the quality of being unlike or dissimilar)


Sense 3differential [BACK TO TOP]

Meaning:

A bevel gear that permits rotation of two shafts at different speeds; used on the rear axle of automobiles to allow wheels to rotate at different speeds on curves

Classified under:

Nouns denoting man-made objects

Synonyms:

differential gear; differential

Hypernyms ("differential" is a kind of...):

bevel gear; pinion and crown wheel; pinion and ring gear (gears that mesh at an angle)


DIFFERENTIAL (adjective)


Sense 1differential [BACK TO TOP]

Meaning:

Relating to or showing a difference

Classified under:

Relational adjectives (pertainyms)

Context example:

differential treatment

Pertainym:

difference (the quality of being unlike or dissimilar)


Sense 2differential [BACK TO TOP]

Meaning:

Involving or containing one or more derivatives

Classified under:

Relational adjectives (pertainyms)

Context example:

differential equation

Domain category:

math; mathematics; maths (a science (or group of related sciences) dealing with the logic of quantity and shape and arrangement)

Pertainym:

differentiation (the mathematical process of obtaining the derivative of a function)


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