figure something out

What is the difference between "figure something out" and "figure something up"?

By Chary, London, England (14th Dec.2006).

When you figure someone out, you begin to understand the individual better. Similarly, when you figure something out, you begin to understand it better.

Here are a few examples.

* Robin was able to figure out the problem.

* Marsha is a new student in class. No one has been able to figure her out.

• It took Blair some time to figure out what Marla was trying to say.

When you "figure something up", you add up the numbers. You total the amount of something.

Here are a few examples.

* Noah and Anita took turns figuring up the bill.

* I am in a hurry. Could you figure the bill up, please?

• Yeti, please figure ups how many bags of cement we will need.

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