A number is a mathematical object used to count, label, and measure. In mathematics, the definition of number has been extended over the years to include such numbers as zero, negative numbers, rational numbers, irrational numbers, and complex numbers.

Mathematical operations are certain procedures that take one or more numbers as input and produce a number as output. Unary operations take a single input number and produce a single output number. For example, the successor operation adds one to an integer, thus the successor of 4 is 5. Binary operations take two input numbers and produce a single output number. Examples of binary operations include addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, and exponentiation. The study of numerical operations is called arithmetic.

A notational symbol that represents a number is called a numeral. In addition to their use in counting and measuring, numerals are often used for labels (telephone numbers), for ordering (serial numbers), and for codes (e.g., ISBNs).

In common use, the word number can mean the abstract object, the symbol, or the word for the number.

Read more about Number:  Classification of Numbers, Numerals

Famous quotes containing the word number:

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    HonorĂ© De Balzac (1799–1850)

    Strange goings on! Jones did it slowly, deliberately, in the bathroom, with a knife, at midnight. What he did was butter a piece of toast. We are too familiar with the language of action to notice at first an anomaly: the ‘it’ of ‘Jones did it slowly, deliberately,...’ seems to refer to some entity, presumably an action, that is then characterized in a number of ways.
    Donald Davidson (b. 1917)

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    Anthony Trollope (1815–1882)