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Displacement usually means a position change of a given magnitude in a given direction. For example, "the ship moved 3 miles northeast," without necessarily specifying where this change in position took place.

The position of an object is usually specified relative to some fixed reference point. In the above example, if the starting point is known, say Boston harbor, you would say that after the displacement, the position of the ship is 3 miles northeast of Boston harbor.

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