Measurement is a cultural technique which aims at a numerical description of facts. As such it is fundamental for the use of mathematical techniques of representation and deduction. The history of the progressive formation of quantitative concepts in the expansion of the mathematical sciences proves to be a complicated process. This process occurs in a space spanned by the three dimensions of existing knowledge, technology, and symbolic resources and eventually results in a match between manipulations on a symbolic and an instrumental level. While the success of the mathematical natural sciences gave rise to Platonic speculations about a mathematical constitution of reality itself, the aspect of instrumental mediation in the process of measurement points toward a modern concept of nature that views it in terms of technical control, thus inscribing measurement into the modern project of a technical mastery of nature.
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