Abstraction is a process by which concepts are derived from the usage and classification of literal concepts, first principles, or other methods. "An abstraction" is the product of this process—a concept that acts as a super-categorical noun for all subordinate concepts, and connects any related concepts as a group, field, or category.

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  1. The act of abstracting, separating, withdrawing, or taking away; withdrawal; the state of being taken away.
    1. The taking surreptitiously for one's own use part of the property of another; purloining. <ref name=SOED/>
    2. Removal of water from a river, lake, or aquifer.
  2. A separation from worldly objects; a recluse life, as a hermit's abstraction; the withdrawal from one's senses. <ref name=SOED/>
  3. The act of focusing on one characteristic of an object rather than the object as a whole group of characteristics; the act of separating said qualities from the object or ideas. <ref name=SOED/>
    Abstraction is necessary for the classification of things into genera and species.
  4. The act of comparing commonality between distinct objects and organizing using those similarities; the act of generalizing characteristics; the product of said generalization. <ref name=SOED/>
  5. An idea or notion of an abstract or theoretical nature. <ref name=SOED/>
    to fight for mere abstractions.
  6. Absence or absorption of mind; inattention to present objects; preoccupation. <ref name=SOED/>
  7. An abstract creation, or piece of art; qualities of artwork that are free from representational aspects. <ref name=SOED/>
  8. A separation of volatile parts by the act of distillation.
  9. An idea of an unrealistic or visionary nature.
  10. The result of mentally abstracting an idea; the results of said process.
  11. The merging of two river valleys by the larger of the two deepening and widening so much so, as to assimilate the smaller.
  12. Any generalization technique that ignores or hides details to capture some kind of commonality between different instances for the purpose of controlling the intellectual complexity of engineered systems, particularly software systems.
  13. Any intellectual construct produced through the technique of abstraction.

The above text is a snippet from Wiktionary: abstraction
and as such is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

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