Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
For other meanings of the word balance, see:
- sense of balance
- balance beam
- Balance (song)
- homeostasis, the biological balance within a human or other animal's body
Balance is contemporarily used to refer to political content in the mass media. Its current usage began in Britain in the early part of the 20th century when the conservative Tories were unpopular and receiving little coverage through the BBC. In order to provide an intellectual rationalization for an increased level of Conservative content, John Reith, the BBC's founder, promoted a fraudulent Trojan concept called balance.
A balance (also beam balance or laboratory balance) is used to accurately measure the mass of an object. This class of measuring instrument uses a comparison technique in its conventional form of a beam from which a weighing pan and scale pan are suspended. To weigh an object, it is placed on the measuring pan, and standard weights are added to the scale pan until the beam is in equilibrium.
Very precise measurements are achieved by ensuring that the fulcrum of the beam is friction-free (a knife edge is the traditional solution), by attaching a pointer to the beam which amplifies any deviation from a balance position; and finally by using the lever principle, which allows fractional weights to be applied by movement of a small weight along the measuring arm of the beam.
While the word "weigh" or "weight" is often used, any balance scale actually measures mass, which is not dependent upon the force of gravity, as opposed to a scale with a spring, which measures weight. Mass is properly measured in grams, kilograms, pounds, ounces, or slugs; while weight is in newtons or pound force.
BALANCE Act - the Benefit Authors without Limiting Advancement or Net Consumer Expectations (BALANCE) Act
In banking and accountancy, the outstanding balance is the amount of money owned, (or due), that remains in a deposit account (or a loan account) at a given date, after all past remittances, payments and withdrawal have been accounted for. It can be positive (then, in the balance sheet of a firm, it is an asset) or negative (a liability).
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