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beta reduction

beta reduction in Technology

[lambda-calculus] The application of a lambda abstraction to an argument expression. A copy of the body of the lambda abstraction is made and occurrences of the bound variable being replaced by the argument. E.g.
(\ x . x+1) 4 --> 4+1
Beta reduction is the only kind of reduction in the pure lambda-calculus. The opposite of beta reduction is beta abstraction. These are the two kinds of beta conversion.
See also name capture.

The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010
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