Search in: Word
Vietnamese keyboard: Off
Virtual keyboard: Show
Computing (FOLDOC) dictionary (also found in English - Vietnamese, English - English (Wordnet), )
Jump to user comments
1. operating system A task running in the background (a
background task) is detached from the terminal where it was
started (and often running at a lower priority); opposite of
foreground. This means that the task's input and output
must be from/to files (or other processes).
Nowadays this term is primarily associated with Unix, but it
appears to have been first used in this sense on OS/360.
2. jargon For a human to do a task "in the background" is to
do it whenever foreground matters are not claiming your
undivided attention, and "to background" something means to
relegate it to a lower priority. "For now, we'll just print a
list of nodes and links; I'm working on the graph-printing
problem in the background." Note that this implies ongoing
activity but at a reduced level or in spare time, in contrast
to mainstream "back burner" (which connotes benign neglect
until some future resumption of activity). Some people prefer
to use the term for processing that they have queued up for
their unconscious minds (often a fruitful tack to take upon
encountering an obstacle in creative work).