In mathematics, orthogonality is the generalization of the notion of perpendicularity to the linear algebra of bilinear forms. Two elements u and v of a vector space with bilinear form B are orthogonal when B(u, v) = 0. Depending on the bilinear form, the vector space may contain nonzero self-orthogonal vectors. In the case of function spaces, families of orthogonal functions are used to form a basis. By extension, orthogonality is also used to refer to the separation of specific features of a system. The term also has specialized meanings in other fields including art and chemistry.
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