What is the adjective given to a mathematical operation/expression on a variable whose new value can only be described in terms of that variable's existing value? Sequential operation?
- Example: i = i + 1
- Counter-example: i = 3 + 1
I don't know if what I call a "sequential operation" is semantically opposite to "idempotent" operation/expression but it does seem like it (e.g. the counter-example shown doesn't change value depending on how often you execute it).
Why I'm asking I'm trying to distinguish between functions in my computer program where you need to read the existing value into memory before you can compute the value from those that can be expressed as simple literals. I need to state in my design document that my program must support both cases, and I want to use the mathematically correct term for it. (note it doesn't need to be numerical, it could be string concatenation vs string overwriting).