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Calculation
A calculation is a deliberate process for transforming one or more inputs into one or more results, with variable change.
The term is used in a variety of senses, from the very definite [arithmetic] al calculation of using an [algorithm] to the vague [heuristics] of calculating a strategy in a competition or calculating the chance of a successful relationship between two people.
Multiplying 7 by 8 is a simple algorithmic calculation.
Estimating the fair price for [financial instruments] using the [BlackScholes] model is a complex algorithmic calculation.
[Statistical estimation] s of the likely election results from opinion polls also involve algorithmic calculations, but provide results made up of ranges of possibilities rather than exact answers.
Deciding the best way to build a relationship with a member of the opposite sex may also result from a calculation, but is not definite, predictable, nor even clearly defined. This indefinite application of the term gives it a second area of meaning apart from the [mathematical] senses mentioned above.
To calculate means to ascertain by computing. The English word derives from the [Latin] calculus , which originally meant a small stone in the gallbladder (from Latin calx ). It also meant a pebble used for calculating, or a small stone used as a counter in an [abacus] (Latin abacus , [Greek] abax ). The abacus was an instrument used by Greeks and Romans for arithmetic calculations, preceding the sliderule and the electronic calculator, and consisted of perforated pebbles sliding on an iron bars.
See also
 [Abacus]
 [Calculator]
 [Calculus (disambiguation)]
 [Calculability]
 [Computation]
 [Cost accounting]
 [List of algorithms]
 [Mathematics]
 [Mental calculation]

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