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Is there any differences between "defined by" and "defined as" ?

In my textbooks, the authors use both interchangeably. I am afraid that I am accepting both the same even though the authors are using them with different intentions.

For example,

Ohm's law is defined as

V = I * R,               (1)

where V is voltage, I current, and R resistance.

and

Ohm's law is defined by

V = I * R,               (1)

where V is voltage, I current, and R resistance.

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by) Materials can be defined by their properties like solid, liquid or gaseous.

as) The behavior of these materials is "defined as" properties.

in) The properties of different chemical elements are defined in a periodic-table.

The same variation works with "described as,by, and in", which I prefer. Decribed,eqals,defined...They are all needed for distinction and classification.

  • Thank you. Can you give a bit more examples containing mathematical equations? For me, the word 'define' is almost used when I describe some functions. Like, the performance function is defined (as/by) f(x). – Danny_Kim Feb 6 '18 at 16:09
  • I'm not a math nut, sorry. But i know that there are also same scientific definitions. Good Luck. – FrankMK Feb 6 '18 at 16:13

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