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3 definitions found
 for Calculus of variations
From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Variation \Va`ri*a"tion\, n. [OE. variatioun, F. variation, L.
     variatio. See Vary.]
     1. The act of varying; a partial change in the form,
        position, state, or qualities of a thing; modification;
        alteration; mutation; diversity; deviation; as, a
        variation of color in different lights; a variation in
        size; variation of language.
        [1913 Webster]
  
              The essences of things are conceived not capable of
              any such variation.                   --Locke.
        [1913 Webster]
  
     2. Extent to which a thing varies; amount of departure from a
        position or state; amount or rate of change.
        [1913 Webster]
  
     3. (Gram.) Change of termination of words, as in declension,
        conjugation, derivation, etc.
        [1913 Webster]
  
     4. (Mus.) Repetition of a theme or melody with fanciful
        embellishments or modifications, in time, tune, or
        harmony, or sometimes change of key; the presentation of a
        musical thought in new and varied aspects, yet so that the
        essential features of the original shall still preserve
        their identity.
        [1913 Webster]
  
     5. (Alg.) One of the different arrangements which can be made
        of any number of quantities taking a certain number of
        them together.
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     Annual variation (Astron.), the yearly change in the right
        ascension or declination of a star, produced by the
        combined effects of the precession of the equinoxes and
        the proper motion of the star.
  
     Calculus of variations. See under Calculus.
  
     Variation compass. See under Compass.
  
     Variation of the moon (Astron.), an inequality of the
        moon's motion, depending on the angular distance of the
        moon from the sun. It is greater at the octants, and zero
        at the quadratures.
  
     Variation of the needle (Geog. & Naut.), the angle included
        between the true and magnetic meridians of a place; the
        deviation of the direction of a magnetic needle from the
        true north and south line; -- called also declination of
        the needle.
        [1913 Webster]
  
     Syn: Change; vicissitude; variety; deviation.
          [1913 Webster]

From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Calculus \Cal"cu*lus\, n.; pl. Calculi. [L, calculus. See
     Calculate, and Calcule.]
     1. (Med.) Any solid concretion, formed in any part of the
        body, but most frequent in the organs that act as
        reservoirs, and in the passages connected with them; as,
        biliary calculi; urinary calculi, etc.
        [1913 Webster]
  
     2. (Math.) A method of computation; any process of reasoning
        by the use of symbols; any branch of mathematics that may
        involve calculation.
        [1913 Webster]
  
     Barycentric calculus, a method of treating geometry by
        defining a point as the center of gravity of certain other
        points to which co["e]fficients or weights are ascribed.
        
  
     Calculus of functions, that branch of mathematics which
        treats of the forms of functions that shall satisfy given
        conditions.
  
     Calculus of operations, that branch of mathematical logic
        that treats of all operations that satisfy given
        conditions.
  
     Calculus of probabilities, the science that treats of the
        computation of the probabilities of events, or the
        application of numbers to chance.
  
     Calculus of variations, a branch of mathematics in which
        the laws of dependence which bind the variable quantities
        together are themselves subject to change.
  
     Differential calculus, a method of investigating
        mathematical questions by using the ratio of certain
        indefinitely small quantities called differentials. The
        problems are primarily of this form: to find how the
        change in some variable quantity alters at each instant
        the value of a quantity dependent upon it.
  
     Exponential calculus, that part of algebra which treats of
        exponents.
  
     Imaginary calculus, a method of investigating the relations
        of real or imaginary quantities by the use of the
        imaginary symbols and quantities of algebra.
  
     Integral calculus, a method which in the reverse of the
        differential, the primary object of which is to learn from
        the known ratio of the indefinitely small changes of two
        or more magnitudes, the relation of the magnitudes
        themselves, or, in other words, from having the
        differential of an algebraic expression to find the
        expression itself.
        [1913 Webster]

From WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006) :

  calculus of variations
      n 1: the calculus of maxima and minima of definite integrals

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