from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A systematically arranged and comprehensive collection of laws.
  • n. A systematic collection of regulations and rules of procedure or conduct: a traffic code.
  • n. A system of signals used to represent letters or numbers in transmitting messages.
  • n. A system of symbols, letters, or words given certain arbitrary meanings, used for transmitting messages requiring secrecy or brevity.
  • n. A system of symbols and rules used to represent instructions to a computer; a computer program.
  • n. Genetics The genetic code.
  • n. Slang A patient whose heart has stopped beating, as in cardiac arrest.
  • transitive v. To systematize and arrange (laws and regulations) into a code.
  • transitive v. To convert (a message, for example) into code.
  • intransitive v. Genetics To specify the genetic code for an amino acid or a polypeptide.
  • intransitive v. Computer Science To write or revise a computer program.
  • intransitive v. Slang To go into cardiac arrest.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A short symbol, often with little relation to the item it represents.
  • n. A body of law, sanctioned by legislation, in which the rules of law to be specifically applied by the courts are set forth in systematic form; a compilation of laws by public authority; a digest.
  • n. Any system of principles, rules or regulations relating to one subject; as, the medical code, a system of rules for the regulation of the professional conduct of physicians; the naval code, a system of rules for making communications at sea means of signals.
  • n. A set of rules for converting information into another form or representation.
  • n. A cryptographic system using a codebook that converts words or phrases into codewords.
  • n. A programming language (or other computer language), a program, a routine written in it, or, more generally, the input of a translator, an interpretator or a browser, namely: source code, machine code, bytecode.
  • n. A computer program, or more generally, any defined computing process.
  • v. To write software programs.
  • v. To categorise by assigning identifiers from a schedule, for example CPT coding for medical insurance purposes.
  • v. To encode.
  • v. Of a patient, to suffer a sudden medical emergency such as cardiac arrest.
  • v. To encode a protein.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A body of law, sanctioned by legislation, in which the rules of law to be specifically applied by the courts are set forth in systematic form; a compilation of laws by public authority; a digest.
  • n. Any system of rules or regulations relating to one subject.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To prepare (a message or despatch) for transmission by translating it into the cipher or arbitrarily chosen words of the code previously agreed upon.
  • n. In Roman law, one of several systematic or classified collections of the statutory part of that law, made by various later emperors, as the Codex Hermogenianus, Codex Theodosianus, etc.; especially, a classified collection made by Justinian (see below).
  • n. In modern jurisprudence: A systematic and complete body of statute law intended to supersede all other law within its scope.
  • n. A body of law which is intended to be merely a restatement of the principles of the existing law in a systematic form.
  • n. Hence A digest or compendium; an orderly arrangement or system; a body of rules or facts for the regulation or explication of any subject: as, the military code; the code of honor (see below).
  • n. Specifically A system of signals with the rules which govern their use.
  • n. See code noir, below.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a coding system used for transmitting messages requiring brevity or secrecy
  • n. a set of rules or principles or laws (especially written ones)
  • v. attach a code to
  • n. (computer science) the symbolic arrangement of data or instructions in a computer program or the set of such instructions
  • v. convert ordinary language into code


Middle English, from Old French, from Latin cōdex, book; see codex.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Old French code ("system of law"), from Latin codex, later form of caudex ("the stock or stem of a tree, a board or tablet of wood smeared over with wax, on which the ancients originally wrote; hence, a book, a writing."). (Wiktionary)


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  • I wonder if it's possible to run a code from a variable? code = msgbox, hello run, % code%

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  • With Rails 2.1, you'll actually get the secret code in @code, even though it comes from a private method of the account object.

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  • # code to run on side of SOAP:: Lite server my $code =

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  • (hint: the answer is 21) @code@ for inline code, and > code

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  • [code] % code% [/code] and When it is complete, you could have a GUI pop up with the topic title and message body.

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  • [b] Here is some code I have tried: [/b] [code] % code% [/code]

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  • This same Beck recently urged Christians to leave their churches if their ministers ever spoke about "social justice" -- the very foundation of King's leadership during the 1950's and 1960's -- because he considers the term code for "communism and Nazism."

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  • The term code is often used to denote large-scale operations.


  • The other thing that of course we've become familiar with is the term code blue.

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  • This word has too many meanings. The meaning I'm in love with is coding as a method of classification. Mmm, such a cool word.

    July 18, 2008

  • Short for code blue, a medical emergency that usually means someone's heart, breathing, or both, have stopped. In most hospitals a designated cohort of professionals will respond when code blues are called.

    Used also as an intransitive verb: "Mr Sullivan was doing okay this morning, but coded overnight."

    January 26, 2008

  • Also a form of encryption, not to be confused with a cipher.

    November 29, 2007