Difference between error and mistake
Error vs mistake:
“Error” and “mistake” are two words that are considered as synonyms by many and yet, it must be said that when it comes to the usage of these two words, the way in which they are employed differ considerably. While they can indeed be employed as synonyms in certain instances, it is always wise to know the subtle difference between these two words in order to use them at appropriate instances.
“Error” is a word that usually stands for a wrong committed by a person that is considered as an imprudent deviation from a set code of behavior. It could also be an unintentional deviation from what is considered as right that usually occurs due to ignorance, deficiency, misjudgment or accident. Error is a word that is mostly used to implicate computing and programming problems as the word is considered as more technical and formal in nature. For instance, one often receives “error messages” on the computer when a certain mechanism goes wrong or a password or a certain function has been handled wrongly by the user.
The word “mistake” often implies to make a blunder or misunderstand a situation or a fact. “Mistake” is often used in instances when a wrong is committed due to misjudgment of a situation or a fact. A mistake could also mean a misunderstanding, a misidentification of a certain phenomena or a situation. Observe the following examples.
I mistakenly added salt in the tea instead of sugar.
I’m sorry, I mistook you for someone else.
I made a mistake in the calculations.
The above examples indicate that a mistake is usually an unintentional wrong committed due to wrong judgment or an honest misunderstanding.
What is the difference between mistake and error?
“Error” and “mistake” are often seen to be used as synonyms due to the similarity of the two words and yet, there do exist certain differences in the sense in which they are employed which in turn needs to be taken in to account. The word “error” due to its rather formal and technical sense, is used in technical and computing matters whereas “mistake” is a word that is seen to be used in day to day life. One often sees error messages on the computer when certain functionalities go awry within the system. In a sense, the word “error” has a graver and a sinister feel to it whereas a “mistake” gives the sense of it being a simple matter which is quite capable of being set straight.
The definition of the word “error” implies an impudent deviation from a set code of behavior that takes place due to bad judgment which is often intentional. But the word “mistake” implies an accidental wrong committed due to a misunderstanding. Observe the following examples.
The computer displayed an error before it crashed.
I made a mistake in these calculations. I will set it straight.
It was a grave error in judgment that led to releasing the prisoner early.
The above examples demonstrate the ways in which “error” and “mistake” could be used. The word “error” is used in much graver instances when the wrong committed cannot be easily corrected. A mistake, however, can be set right, comparatively easily.
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