# Tuple

In mathematics, a **tuple** is a finite ordered list (sequence) of elements. An **n-tuple** is a sequence (or ordered list) of n elements, where n is a non-negative integer. There is only one 0-tuple, referred to as *the empty tuple*. An n-tuple is defined inductively using the construction of an ordered pair.

Mathematicians usually write tuples by listing the elements within parentheses "( )" and separated by commas; for example, (2, 7, 4, 1, 7) denotes a 5-tuple. Sometimes other symbols are used to surround the elements, such as square brackets "[ ]" or angle brackets "⟨ ⟩". Braces "{ }" are used to specify arrays in some programming languages but not in mathematical expressions, as they are the standard notation for sets. The term *tuple* can often occur when discussing other mathematical objects, such as vectors.

In computer science, tuples come in many forms. Most typed functional programming languages implement tuples directly as product types,[1] tightly associated with algebraic data types, pattern matching, and destructuring assignment.[2] Many programming languages offer an alternative to tuples, known as record types, featuring unordered elements accessed by label.[3] A few programming languages combine ordered tuple product types and unordered record types into a single construct, as in C structs and Haskell records. Relational databases may formally identify their rows (records) as *tuples*.

Tuples also occur in relational algebra; when programming the semantic web with the Resource Description Framework (RDF); in linguistics;[4] and in philosophy.[5]