Translation

powered by

Computing (FOLDOC) dictionary
(also found in
English - Vietnamese, English - English (Wordnet), Vietnamese - Vietnamese)

N

/N/ quant. 1. A large and indeterminate number of objects:

"There were N bugs in that crock!" Also used in its

original sense of a variable name: "This crock has N bugs,

as N goes to infinity." (The true number of bugs is always

at least N + 1; see Lubarsky's Law of CyberneticEntomology.)

2. A variable whose value is inherited from the current

context. For example, when a meal is being ordered at a

restaurant, N may be understood to mean however many people

there are at the table. From the remark "We'd like to order N

wonton soups and a family dinner for N - 1" you can deduce

that one person at the table wants to eat only soup, even

though you don't know how many people there are.

3. "Nth": The ordinal counterpart of N, senses 1 and 2. "Now

for the Nth and last time..." In the specific context

"Nth-year grad student", N is generally assumed to be at least

4, and is usually 5 or more (see tenured graduate student).

See also random numbers, two-to-the-N.