Definitions
from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
 adj. Of or relating to an exponent.
 adj. Mathematics Containing, involving, or expressed as an exponent.
 adj. Mathematics Expressed in terms of a designated power of e, the base of natural logarithms.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/ShareAlike License
 adj. Relating to an exponent.
 adj. Expressed in terms of a power of e.
 adj. In modern English, used to describe a high or rapid rate of change.
 n. Any function that has an exponent as an independent variable.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
 adj. Pertaining to exponents; involving variable exponents
 adj. changing over time in an exponential manner, i. e. increasing or decreasing by a fixed ratio for each unit of time.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
 Of or pertaining to an exponent or exponents; involving variable exponents.
 n. The function expressed by the infinite series 1 + x + ½x + ⅙x +, etc., or the Napierian base raised to the power indicated by the variable. Thus, ex = exp. x is the exponential of x.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
 adj. of or involving exponents
 n. a function in which an independent variable appears as an exponent
Etymologies
Sorry, no etymologies found.
Examples

I use the term exponential to refer to compounding's effect to set it off from those who use linear or arithmetic models.
Further Discussion of Compounding Suggestions . . .. . . behind the curtain . . .

MCINTYRE (voice over): Citing what he calls the exponential rise in the number of deaths both U.S. and Iraqi, along with the failure of the government of Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki to disarm the warring militias, Republican Senator John Warner is sounding a dire warning.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) (SOUNDS) MCINTYRE (voiceover): Citing what he calls the exponential rise in the number of deaths, both U.S. and Iraqi, along with the failure of the government of Prime Minister Nouri alMaliki to disarm the warring militias, Republican Senator John Warner is sounding a dire warming while he still has hope, it's fading fast.

JAMIE MCINTYRE, CNN SENIOR PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT (voiceover): Citing what he calls the exponential rise in the number of deaths, both U.S. and Iraqi, along with the failure of the government of Prime Minister Nouri alMaliki to disarm the warring militias, Republican Senator John Warner is sounding a dire warning: While he still has hope, it's fading fast.

PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT (voice over): Citing what he calls the exponential rise in the number of deaths, both U.S. and Iraqi, along with the failure of the government of Prime Minister Nouri alMaliki to disarm the warring militias, Republican Senator John Warner is sounding a dire warning: while he still has hope, it's fading fast.

JAMIE MCINTYRE, CNN SENIOR PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT (voiceover): Citing what he calls the exponential rise in the name of deaths, both U.S. and Iraqi, along with the failure of the government of Prime Minister Nouri AlMaliki to disarm the warring militias, Republican Senator John Warner is sending a dire warning.

PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT (voiceover): Citing what he calls the exponential rise in the number of death, both U.S. and Iraqi, along with the failure of the government Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki to disarm the warring militias.

MCINTYRE (voiceover): Citing what he calls the exponential rise in the number of deaths, both U.S. and Iraqi, along with the failure of the government of Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki to disarm the warring militias, Republican Senator John Warner is sounding a dire warning.

The fingers of the explosions, shooting off in exponential pathways, are a sort of Manifest Destiny writ large across the sky.

Balancing that point where the linear crosses the exponential is what longterm thinking should be about.
reesetee commented on the word exponential
Now *there's* a thought....
July 8, 2007
oroboros commented on the word exponential
Just slip it a Mickey Finn and be a math genius! (hee hee)
July 6, 2007
reesetee commented on the word exponential
If that's the case, oroboros, my number governor is a damned tyrant. ;)
July 6, 2007
oroboros commented on the word exponential
Gotta be designed for it or there wouldn't BE "exponential numbers". Maybe most brains have a "number governor" installed; the ones that don't are right at home with exponentials and equations like e^iπ = 1 and so on.
July 6, 2007
seanahan commented on the word exponential
There is a fundamental human difficultly in dealing with exponential numbers. The mind has evolved to understand small quantities, the integers. The rational numbers, or fractions, are probably a rather recent invention, other than perhaps, I'll take 1/4 of that Woolly Mammoth we just killed. The human brain is just not designed to deal with numbers on an exponential scale.
Take, for example, the problem of the grains of rice on the chess board. At first glance, 1, 2, 4, 8, doesn't seem like a big deal. Of course, if you do the math, 2^64 is more grains of rice than have ever existed, but intuitively, it doesn't seem to be.
July 6, 2007
uselessness commented on the word exponential
More like a curvy L... or a J, as long as it's not one of those Js that curves back up on the short side. ;)
July 6, 2007
seanahan commented on the word exponential
I took an intro biology class where they referred to it as a "Jshaped curve", which seemed like a pointless simplification.
July 6, 2007
whichbe commented on the word exponential
what if exponentially more people understood this word?
July 5, 2007
azzurre commented on the word exponential
if more people understood this word....
March 2, 2007