Counting  

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"Gilbert Ryle supposedly once said that when I use an abacus, I am not counting with my mind, but with my fingers, that the abacus is my extended mind."--Sholem Stein

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Counting is the process of determining the number of elements of a finite set of objects. The traditional way of counting consists of continually increasing a (mental or spoken) counter by a unit for every element of the set, in some order, while marking (or displacing) those elements to avoid visiting the same element more than once, until no unmarked elements are left; if the counter was set to one after the first object, the value after visiting the final object gives the desired number of elements. The related term enumeration refers to uniquely identifying the elements of a finite (combinatorial) set or infinite set by assigning a number to each element.

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Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Counting" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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