- a function of two variables that is obtained from a given function, y = f(x), and that expresses the approximate increment in the given function as the derivative of the function times the increment in the independent variable, written as dy = f′(x)dx.
- any generalization of this function to higher dimensions.
- the difference involved in a differential rate.
- differential rate.
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Origin of differential
OTHER WORDS FROM differentialdif·fer·en·tial·ly, adverb
Words nearby differential
Example sentences from the Web for differential
That differential accounted for about 60 percent of the downward revision.
He turned his thesis into the book Geometric Perturbation Theory in Physics on the new developments in differential geometry.This is What Happens When You Teach Machines the Power of Natural Selection|James Barrat|February 1, 2014|DAILY BEAST
For smaller volumes, Kaijser said, the differential between wood and PVC is about 10 percent.Wood Cards Are a Green Alternative to the Classic Plastic Gift Card|Daniel Gross|November 29, 2013|DAILY BEAST
Natural selection is the differential survival of replicators in gene pools.
This is specious quantification, whether or not differential equations have been incompetently applied.Barbara Fredrickson’s Bestselling ‘Positivity’ Is Trashed by a New Study|Will Wilkinson|August 16, 2013|DAILY BEAST
Such men seem to forget the great lesson that the differential calculus has taught us.Religion And Health|James J. Walsh
It is as if a differential quotient should be conscious and treat itself as an adequate substitute for a traced-out curve.Essays in Radical Empiricism|William James
It is clear from this that all so-called elementary (differential) laws involve a relation to the whole.Popular scientific lectures|Ernst Mach
To reduce the strains arising from firing, the arm is fitted with what is known as the "differential recoil."Aeroplanes and Dirigibles of War|Frederick A. Talbot
He improved the differential calculus, solved the isoperimetrical problem and discovered the properties of the logarithmic spiral.The Life of the Spider|J. Henri Fabre
British Dictionary definitions for differential
- an increment in a given function, expressed as the product of the derivative of that function and the corresponding increment in the independent variable
- an increment in a given function of two or more variables, f(x 1, x 2, … x n), expressed as the sum of the products of each partial derivative and the increment in the corresponding variable