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

  • adj. Lacking a definite structure or organization; not formally organized or systematized.
  • adj. Not regulated or regimented: an unstructured environment.
  • adj. Psychology Having no intrinsic or objective meaning; meaningful by subjective interpretation only: unstructured inkblot tests.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Lacking structure.

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

  • adj. lacking definite structure or organization
  • adj. lacking the system or structure characteristic of living bodies


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • But this was an instant satori, the result of a single tablet or sugar cube, sourced on the black market and often taken in unstructured circumstances.

    Jon Savage on song: The Dovers open their Third Eye

  • He is uncomfortable in unstructured situations and often gets lost on the floor. - Sports

  • This index "indicates to what extent a culture programs its members to feel either uncomfortable or comfortable in unstructured situations."

    The Ideological Animal

  • This kind of conversation has been happening all over the web for years, in unstructured ways and more structured ways like conversations via video replies on YouTube, Myspace and Facebook.

    Seesmic: the genesis of video as conversation

  • Steven Johnson (author of the fantastic Mind Wide Open and other books) has written a fascinating essay about his new creative process, which involves a suite of tools that store his notes and works in unstructured databases, and tease out and suggest subtly connected ideas, so that as he writes, his computer jams with him, suggesting neat tangents to his subjects.

    Boing Boing: January 23, 2005 - January 29, 2005 Archives

  • In its announcement of the deal, Oracle praised Endeca's ability to manage so-called unstructured data like text and email messages that don't easily fit into traditional database systems.

    Oracle to Buy Endeca Technologies

  • Autonomy's specialty is helping companies analyze the so-called "unstructured data" that is increasingly flooding their systems.

    Hewlett Sends PCs Packing

  • Among other things, Mr. Chuang said, such applications need to help workers better organize and exploit what the industry calls "unstructured" information--data that is not stored in the conventional databases that are the foundation of many business programs.

    BEA Co-Founder Chuang Discloses New Venture

  • Adrian Benepe out of the blue and offered to design for the city, pro bono, a playground based around the idea of unstructured free play.

    Making Work of Child's Play

  • And if that weren't bad enough for the life of a game, players regularly find themselves in situations which can be best described as unstructured meaning, not properly supported by game mechanics, unfair competition with one another over access to something they're paying for.

    Top 10 MMOG Trends?


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