A proportion of movement expressable by the normalized vector of a transformation, or by the angle component(s) of an angular coordinate. Can also be defined in terms of the cross product of n-1 vectors, in which n is the number of dimensions in the current coordinate system, though this is less convenient in the real world (although very useful in a mathematical world such as in a computer).

Di*rec"tion (?), n. [L. directio: cf. F. direction.]

1.

The act of directing, of aiming, regulating, guiding, or ordering; guidance; management; superintendence; administration; as, the direction o public affairs or of a bank.

I do commit his youth To your direction. Shak.

All nature is but art, unknown to thee;< ll chance, direction, which thou canst not see. Pope.

2.

That which is imposed by directing; a guiding or authoritative instruction; prescription; order; command; as, he grave directions to the servants.

The princes digged the well . . . by the direction of the law giver. Numb. xxi. 18.

3.

The name and residence of a person to whom any thing is sent, written upon the thing sent; superscription; address; as, the direction of a letter.

4.

The line or course upon which anything is moving or aimed to move, or in which anything is lying or pointing; aim; line or point of tendency; direct line or course; as, the ship sailed in a southeasterly direction.

5.

The body of managers of a corporation or enterprise; board of directors.

6. Gun.

The pointing of a piece with reference to an imaginary vertical axis; -- distinguished from elevation. The direction is given when the plane of sight passes through the object.

Wilhelm.

Syn. -- Administration; guidance; management; superintendence; oversight; government; order; command; guide; clew. Direction, Control, Command, Order. These words, as here compared, have reference to the exercise of power over the actions of others. Control is negative, denoting power to restrain; command is positive, implying a right to enforce obedience; directions are commands containing instructions how to act. Order conveys more prominently the idea of authority than the word direction. A shipmaster has the command of his vessel; he gives orders or directions to the seamen as to the mode of sailing it; and exercises a due control over the passengers.

 

© Webster 1913.

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