Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun The state or quality of being latent.
  • noun Psychology The latency period.
  • noun A latent period.
  • noun The time interval between initiating a query, transmission, or process, and receiving or detecting the results, often given as an average value over a large number of events.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun The state of being latent or concealed; unobserved or undeveloped existence.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun The state or quality of being latent.
  • noun The time between a stimulus the appearance of the response; the time between any causal action and the first appearance of the effect. Called also latent period.
  • noun (Med.) The time between exposure to a carcinogen or other disease-causing agent and the appearance of the consequent disease.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun The state of being latent.
  • noun electronics A delay, a period between the initiation of something and the occurrence.
  • noun medicine The delay between a stimulus and the response it triggers in an organism.

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

  • noun the time that elapses between a stimulus and the response to it
  • noun (computer science) the time it takes for a specific block of data on a data track to rotate around to the read/write head
  • noun the state of being not yet evident or active

Etymologies

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

latent +‎ -cy

Examples

Comments

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  • I find it really frustrating when people talk about "network lag," since "latency" is such a great word for it. When people people say they have "network lag" I often wonder if they also have "brain lag."

    June 21, 2007

  • I think your completely wrong. Any given operation across a network has a latency, but overall, a period of unusually high latencies can be abbreviated as lag. If you can come up with a one syllable (or even two) way to say this better, I'll take it.

    June 22, 2007

  • "The state of being not yet evident or active"

    August 13, 2007

  • Que?

    July 9, 2008

  • In regard to virtual reality productions, "latency" refers to the disorienting lag that users feel when turning theirs heads and the visuals don't quite keep up. This latency results from the mismatch between the motion one feels (with his/her inner ear) and the image one sees (with eyes).

    October 11, 2016