This article is within the scope of WikiProject Measurement, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of Measurement on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
They aren't the same thing. Observational error relates to taking a measurement. Approximation error includes other types of errors - for instance those introduced by using approximate values (e.g., any value used for PI in a digital numerical calculation will be an approximation), those introduced by ignoring less significant effects in a computation, etc. So some observational errors may be examples of approximation errors, but things like systematic measurement error are not particularly relevant to approximation error. Think they should stay separate. Zodon (talk) 06:12, 4 March 2009 (UTC)
I agree, they are clearly distinct topics. Approximation error needn't have any random component, but randomness is pretty fundamental to the concept of measurement/observational error. The articles should be expanded to make the distinction clear though. -- Avenue (talk) 07:07, 4 March 2009 (UTC)
I will remove the merge tags then--Thorseth (talk) 08:30, 14 May 2009 (UTC)