Learn English – Iteration vs. Repetition


What is the difference between "iteration" and "repetition"?

I have looked on wiktionary but I can't catch the difference in their semantics. Does any reference define the difference between these two words?

Wiktionary gives:

iteration (plural iterations)

  1. Recital or performance a second time; repetition.

  2. A variation or version.

    • The architect drafted several iterations of the floorplan before deciding on his final design.
  3. (computing) The use of repetition in a computer program, especially in the form of a loop.

  4. (computing) A single repetition of the code within such a repetitive process. The code calculates the appropriate value at each iteration.

repetition (countable and uncountable, plural repetitions)

  1. The act or an instance of repeating or being repeated.

  2. (weightlifting): The act of performing a single, controlled exercise motion; also called a rep. A group of repetitions is a set.

Definitions 1, 3 and 4 for "iteration" seem to be synonymous with "repetition" (obviously definition 1 of it).

Best Answer

Iteration uses an iterator to count through a list of (usually different) items:

Today, I must:
1: go shopping
2: clean the house
3: mow the lawn

Repetition does the same thing again, and again, etc...:

One sheep, two sheep, three sheep, ...