The **equals sign** or **equality sign** (**=**) is a mathematical symbol used to indicate equality. It was invented in 1557 by Robert Recorde. The equals sign is placed between two quantities that have the same value, as in an equation. It is assigned to the Unicode and ASCII character 003D in hexadecimal, 0061 in decimal.

**Equality**

In computer science, a **relational operator** is a programming language construct or operator that tests or defines some kind of relation between two entities. These include numerical equality (e.g., 5 = 5) and inequalities (e.g., 4 ≥ 3).

In programming languages that include a distinct boolean data type in their type system, like Java, these operators return true or false, depending on whether the conditional relationship between the two operands holds or not. In other languages such as C, relational operators return the integers 0 or 1. Some programming languages make a syntactical distinction between the "equals" of assignment (e.g. `a = 1`

assigns the value 1 to the variable "a") and the "equals" of comparison (`if a == 1 then ...`

). Other languages determine which is meant from context.

The **plus and minus signs** (**+** and **−**) are mathematical symbols used to represent the notions of positive and negative as well as the operations of addition and subtraction. Their use has been extended to many other meanings, more or less analogous. **Plus** and **minus** are Latin terms meaning "more" and "less", respectively.

**Elementary arithmetic** is the simplified portion of arithmetic which includes the operations of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division.

Elementary arithmetic starts with the natural numbers and the written symbols (digits) which represent them. The process for combining a pair of these numbers with the four basic operations traditionally relies on memorized results for small values of numbers, including the contents of a multiplication table to assist with multiplication and division.

**Elementary algebra** encompasses some of the basic concepts of algebra, one of the main branches of mathematics. It is typically taught to secondary school students and builds on their understanding of arithmetic. Whereas arithmetic deals with specified numbers, algebra introduces quantities without fixed values, known as variables. This use of variables entails a use of algebraic notation and an understanding of the general rules of the operators introduced in arithmetic. Unlike abstract algebra, elementary algebra is not concerned with algebraic structures outside the realm of real and complex numbers.

The use of variables to denote quantities allows general relationships between quantities to be formally and concisely expressed, and thus enables solving a broader scope of problems. Most quantitative results in science and mathematics are expressed as algebraic equations.

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