is there really such thing as a straight line?

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  • 1 decade ago
    Best Answer

    I would have to say, that perfection is in the eye of the beholder.

    I think it depends on what level of precision you need. Take Pi for example. The difference between 5 digits of Pi and hundreds of digits of Pi is virtually indistinguishable in real life terms. For anything above microscopic levels 3.14 is perfectly precise. Yet far from absolutely perfect.

    If you're talking about a line. It depends on resolution. Even a line the width of a human hair would have some kind of jagged or bumpy edges and so it would technically not be considered straight, but then again, if you're building the great pyramid or even a gazebo in your back yard you could get buy with a much lower level of precision.

    Perfection would have to be defined in absolute terms in order to have an absolutely perfect answer.

    Good luck.

  • Anonymous
    4 years ago

    In Calculus II you will derive a proof that there is no such thing as a straight line. A point and a circle are special cases of a line.

  • ali k
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago

    A line can be described as an ideal zero-width,[1] infinitely long, perfectly straight curve (the term curve in mathematics includes "straight curves")[2] containing an infinite number of points. In Euclidean geometry, exactly one line can be found that passes through any two points. The line provides the shortest connection between the points.[3]

    In two dimensions, two different lines can either be parallel, meaning they never meet, or may intersect at one and only one point. In three or more dimensions, lines may also be skew, meaning they don't meet, but also don't define a plane. Two distinct planes intersect in at most one line. Three or more points that lie on the same line are called collinear.

    In geometry, a line segment is a part of a line that is bounded by two distinct end points, and contains every point on the line between its end points. Examples of line segments include the sides of a triangle or square. More generally, when the end points are both vertices of a polygon, the line segment is either an edge (of that polygon) if they are adjacent vertices, or otherwise a diagonal. When the end points both lie on a curve such as a circle, a line segment is called a chord (of that curve).

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Straight_line

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Line_segment

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Read this:

    It is suggested that just as itis not possible to describe the absolute static condition or perfect circle neither can there be accepted the possibility for the absolute straight line. A question arises regarding the theory for space curvature. Do we have any evidence or definitive figure (however minimal) for degree of curvature of the line? Does the curvature of space by its immensity have a 'gravitational' effect upon a so-called straight projection?

    Nobody knows but I saw your other question and you were asking about a circle so yeah

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Straight lines exist mathematically, but in the physical universe there's no such thing. However, there are some bars in my town where a lot of "gay" lines hang out.

  • 4 years ago

    There is; using your example, to build a wall, you'd use a plumb line. That hangs vertically in a straight line. If you hung one 30ft away, due to the curvature of the earth they wouldn't be completely paralell, but both would be straight (even taking into account the fact that the earth is spinning, moving round the sun, the sun is moving in the galaxy and the galaxy is moving in all sorts of strange directions). If you used a laser line to build the wall, that would be straight but your wall would get higher as the earth curved away.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    The sad thing is that I spent an entire ride from a sushi/chinese food/seafood buffetto my house pondering this exact subject.

    I decided that since we think of the staright line as being there, it is(even though the world itself doesn't).

    Source(s): Lol*star*
  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Please see my answer to your question about a perfect circle. The same applies.

    In nature, the closest thing we get to a straight line is a ray of light.

  • 1 decade ago

    yes, i am pretty sure that there is... ha, you're funny!!

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