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#top Problem

From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 [gcide]:

Problem \Prob"lem\, noun [F. probl['e]me, L. problema, fr. Gr. ? anything thrown forward, a question proposed for solution, fr. ? to throw or lay before; ? before, forward + ? to throw. Cf. {Parable}. ]

2. (Math.) Anything which is required to be done; as, in geometry, to bisect a line, to draw a perpendicular; or, in algebra, to find an unknown quantity.

Note: Problem differs from theorem in this, that a problem is something to be done, as to bisect a triangle, to describe a circle, etc.; a theorem is something to be proved, as that all the angles of a triangle are equal to two right angles.

{Plane problem} (Geom.), a problem that can be solved by the use of the rule and compass.

From WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006) [wn]:

noun

1: a state of difficulty that needs to be resolved; "she and her husband are having problems"; "it is always a job to contact him"; "urban problems such as traffic congestion and smog" [syn: {problem}, {job}]

3: a source of difficulty; "one trouble after another delayed the job"; "what's the problem?" [syn: {trouble}, {problem}]