Similarity is some degree of symmetry in either analogy and resemblance between two or more concepts or objects. The notion of similarity rests either on exact or approximate repetitions of patterns in the compared items. In the case of approximate repetitions we talk about statistical similarity as found in a fractal and its parts. Finding similarities or distinguishing between dissimilarities depends on the faculties of pattern recognition and disambiguation, respectively.
A general method to calculate probability of an event based on another similar event is called relative probability If A, B are different events Probability of A = P(A) Then P(B) = P(A) x R where R is the similarity ratio between A,B If A=B --> R=1 If A R=0
Specific definitionsDifferent fields provide differing definitions of similarity:
- In mathematics,
- In psychology, similarity (psychology)
- In music, Musical similarity
- In chemistry, Chemical similarity
- In engineering, similarity or similitude describe the geometric, kinematic and dynamic 'likeness' of two (or more) systems.
- In computational linguistics, semantic similarity
- In philosophy, similarity is defined as sharing properties or characteristic traits. The sky is similar to the sea, for example, because the sky and the sea both share the property of being blue. This definition has some interesting consequences. First, it follows that resemblance is reflexive, since everything shares its own properties. Second, it follows that resemblance is symmetric, since if x shares properties with y then y shares those same properties with x. Third, qualitative identity turns out to be a limiting case of resemblance, since qualitative identity is defined as sharing all rather than some properties.
See alsodifference, sameness, equality
dissimilarity in German: Ähnlichkeit
dissimilarity in French: similitude
contrariety, contrast, departure, deviation, difference, disaccord, disaccordance, disagreement, disconformity, discongruity, discord, discordance, discrepancy, discreteness, disparity, dissemblance, dissent, dissimilitude, dissonance, distance, distinction, distinctness, divarication, divergence, divergency, diversity, far cry, heterogeneity, inaccordance, incompatibility, incongruity, inconsistency, inconsonance, inequality, inharmoniousness, inharmony, irreconcilability, margin, mixture, nonconformity, odds, offset, opposition, otherness, separateness, severance, unconformity, unlikeness, unorthodoxy, variance, variation, variegation, variety