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

  • adj. Of great size; large.
  • adj. Large in scope or extent; large-scale: a macro analysis of many reports.
  • n. Computer Science A single, user-defined command that is part of an application and executes a series of commands.
  • n. Computer Science A shorthand representation for a number of lines of code.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. very large in scope or scale
  • n. A comparatively human-friendly abbreviation of complicated input to a computer program.
  • n. macro lens

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. very large in scale or scope or capability.
  • n. a single computer instruction which symbolizes, and is converted at the time of program execution or by a compiler into, a series of instructions in the same computer language.
  • n. A keystroke (or combination of keystrokes) which symbolizes and is replaced by a series of keystrokes; -- a convenient feature of some advanced programs, such as word processors or database programs, which allows a user to rapidly execute any series of operations which may be performed multiple times. Such macros may typically be defined by the program user, without rewriting or recompiling the program.

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

  • adj. very large in scale or scope or capability
  • n. a single computer instruction that results in a series of instructions in machine language


Short for macroinstruction.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
1933, from macro-, from French, from Latin, from Ancient Greek μακρός (makros, "long"). (Wiktionary)
1971, elliptical form of macro lens, from macro- + lens. Compare macrophotography. (Wiktionary)



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  • (internet slang) Also "image macro," picture with funny text on it-- exemplified by LOLcats (or, anything with a picture + Impact font)

    March 11, 2010