It is an arbitrary, abstract thing. Its only interesting quality is that it can be present or absent. I'd settle for a thing that exists or doesn't exist, is here or not here, etc. I'm just after a single word to describe this thing.

closed as unclear what you're asking by user66974, Marv Mills, Edwin Ashworth, RegDwigнt Apr 24 '15 at 11:12

Please clarify your specific problem or add additional details to highlight exactly what you need. As it's currently written, it’s hard to tell exactly what you're asking. See the How to Ask page for help clarifying this question. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    Binary -- it's only known characteristic is being binary. – Kris Apr 24 '15 at 7:12
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    how about item? entity? – Mamta D Apr 24 '15 at 7:28
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    Very difficult to answer this- every single thing can be either present or absent, exist or not exist, therefore every single thing has this quality. I think you need to expand and clarify. – Marv Mills Apr 24 '15 at 8:48
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    Yes, please do clarify. The answers so far rather beautifully demonstrate that nobody has the slightest idea what on Earth you are even talking about. – RegDwigнt Apr 24 '15 at 11:16
  • I've accepted "Presence", because its the answer we managed to come up with ourselves. Its sort of obvious really when I used "present" as one of the states in the original question. – Rob N Apr 24 '15 at 11:39

The fact of something being either absent or present is called its presence.

From wiktionary :

The fact or condition of being present

If you are interested in

for a thing that exists or doesn't exist

you may talk about its reality.

From wiktionary

The state of being actual or real.


As Sheldon Cooper would shout:

Schrödinger's cat

enter image description here


When we speak about an assumed thing, that may or may not exist, we use 'hypothetical'

hypothetical on Dictionary.com


(of a proposition) highly conjectural; not well supported by available evidence.

(of a proposition or syllogism) conditional.

Usage examples on yourdictionary.com


Being : the state or quality of having existence

Beingness : the state or fact of existing

Existence : the fact or state of existing

Existability : the possibility that something can exist

So the quality of Existing, or not Existing, is Existability.


Example usage:

The Existability of happiness in rocks is in the negative. [[Meaning : Rocks are devoid of happiness]]

The Existability of hardness in rocks is in the positive. [[Meaning : Rocks may or may not have the attribute of hardness. Some rocks are hard, while some are soft]]

So whether some quality can be present (or not) is expressed by Existability.

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