Orthogonality comes from the Greek orthos, meaning "straight", and gonia, meaning "angle". It has somewhat different meanings depending on the context, but most involve the idea of perpendicular, non-overlapping, varying independently, or uncorrelated.
In mathematics, two lines or curves are orthogonal if they are perpendicular at their point of intersection. Two vectors are orthogonal if and only if their dot product is zero. In computer science, orthogonality has to do with the ability of a language, method, or object to vary without side-effects. When two statistics vary independently of each other, they are considered orthogonal.
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