One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
Denoting an element of a set which is unchanged in value when multiplied or otherwise operated on by itself.
- ‘The purpose of addpath is to add a pathel (path element) to a pathvar (path variable) in an idempotent fashion.’
- ‘He used the, now familiar, tools of idempotent and nilpotent elements.’
- ‘These two processes are inverses of one another, and show that the theory of Boolean algebras and of rings with identity in which every element is idempotent are definitionally equivalent.’
- ‘We have already seen the addpath function, which performs an idempotent addition of a pathel to a pathvar.’
- ‘Read his paper, On a conjecture of Littlewood and idempotent measures, American Journal of Mathematics 82, 191-212.’
An idempotent element.
- ‘Every left ideal is generated by an idempotent, and R is von neumann.’
- ‘Further, an idempotent is semiprimitive if it is central and if it cannot be expressed as u+v where u and v are central idempotents with uv = 0.’
Late 19th century: from Latin idem ‘same’ + potent.
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