α. ME infformacion, ME infformacyoun, ME informacyoun, ME informatioune, ME jnformacion, ME ynformacion, ME 16 informacioun, ME–15 informacyon, ME–16 informacion, ME– information, 16 infformation; Sc. pre-17 informacion, pre-17 informacioun, pre-17 informacioune, pre-17 informatione, pre-17 informatioun, pre-17 informatioune, pre-17 informatyoun, pre-17 17– information.
β. ME enfarmacion, ME enformacioun, ME enfromacion, ME–15 enformacion, ME–15 enformacyon, ME–16 enformation, 15 enformacione. (Show Less)
Frequency (in current use):
Origin: Of multiple origins. Partly a borrowing from French. Partly a borrowing from Latin. Etymons: French enformacioun; Latin informātiōn-, informātiō.
< (i) Anglo-Norman enformacioun
, Anglo-Norman and Middle French enformacion
) investigation in a criminal matter made by legal officers (1274 in Old French; compare faire des enformations
to proceed to a judicial investigation (1323)), instruction (c
1275 in Anglo-Norman), (non-judicial) investigation (1334), piece of information, information, data, knowledge (14th cent. or earlier), (plural) information which one obtains about someone (c
1360), action of forming something or of giving something a shape or form (c
1377), (plural) collection of knowledge about a particular subject (c
and its etymon (ii) classical Latin informātiōn-
formation (of an idea), conception, in post-classical Latin also teaching, instruction (5th cent.), formation, creation, arrangement (from 12th cent. in British sources), (in philosophy) infusion with form (frequently from mid 13th cent. in British sources) < informāt-
, past participial stem of informāre
, although in both French and English the sense development is greatly influenced by association with the verb (see senses at ), and in each language the word may partly show a formation directly from the verb.
Compare Catalan informació
(1377), Spanish información
(14th cent.), enformación
(14th cent.; now arch.), Portuguese informação
(14th cent.), Italian informazione
The imparting of knowledge in general.
The imparting of incriminating knowledge.
P1. more information than (a person) needs (also wants) (to know) (and variants): used to express (humorous) disgust or disapproval in response to a disclosure of an excessively personal or graphic nature.
1993 14 May a4/1
She was..regaling 323 strangers in the audience with the difference between C-section and normal delivery. The bemused Hall turned to the camera and confided, ‘That's more information than I needed.’
1993 Q. Tarantino & R. Avary
(film script, last draft)
Vincent. I'm gonna take a piss. Mia. That was a little bit more information than I needed to know, but go right ahead.
18 Feb. 5 c
This probably is more information than you want, or need, to know, but [the] Nashville forward..likes to be naked in his hotel room on road trips.
2015 S. Nobel vi. 83
‘He's got a serious case of the squirts!’ ‘Whoa, whoa! That's more information than I need, but thanks for the visual.’
P2. colloq. too much information: used to express (humorous) disgust or disapproval in response to a disclosure of an excessively personal or graphic nature; frequently with capital initials; cf. .
1996 22 Sept. b9/5
Too Much Information!..‘I am a vegetarian, so I use Spam only as a form of contraception,’ former Monty Python lunatic Eric Idle said recently.
2005 July 82/1
‘I would drag my balls over ten miles of broken glass to hear Drea piss in a tin cup over a telephone,’ he says, taking the concept of ‘too much information’ to previously uncharted terrain.
2015 J. Nelson 231
I left something for you. A photo... With a note on the back... It's gone... Probably for the best. Too Much Information, as you lot say.
1871 ‘A Bank Manager’ 156
It is well..to obtain through some respectable private information-agent, a trade opinion.
1950 22 June 5/3
It was a breach of conduct for General Mast..to have been on familiar terms with him as information agent.
1906 8 July 10/1
In addition to establishing a much-talked-of exhibit, they are becoming a sort of information center, and are queried with all sorts of queries.
1997 B. McCrea et al. 210
On the southern tip of the lagoon is a large old farmhouse.., where there's an information centre, tea room and accommodation.
1915 F. W. Sanders 79
The information-content of the instruction should be as large as the limited time and..the ignorance of auxiliary subjects would make possible.
1982 J. Benedetti
The meaning of the words spoken depends not merely on their information content but on the situation in which they occur.
2002 15 Mar. 1973
Chemical ecologists endeavor to decipher both the chemical structure and the information content of the mediating molecules.
1890 20 Feb. 286/3
This corner shall become an Information Desk for our young readers.
1947 J. Shelton in June 94/1
He climbed out, paid the cabbie and walked to the information desk presenting his reservation for transport.
20 Oct. 9
He hopes to instil common sense into the gallery, which until this year lacked simple visitor facilities such as a cloakroom and information desk.
1942 3 Mar. 1/4
Arrests to stop information flow disclosed by Navy.
14 July a15
Satellites are the centres of gravity when it comes to information flow.
1890 M. Townsend Pref. 1
The mass of curious facts, coincidences, and information-items from which this book is evolved.
1978 21 Nov. 28/3
The post will involve..writing of some information items.
1782 J. Scott 35
This man..had opened what may properly be called an information office in Calcutta.
1870 F. Kapp 213
For the government of the information office, for friends of arriving emigrants.
1959 11 Aug. 6/2
The information office of the United States Embassy in London has sent to newspapers what it calls a ‘backgrounder’ on the events in Laos.
30 Dec. 15
The information office released a list of 75 spokespeople associated with 62 government departments at a low-key news conference on Tuesday.
1885 29 Mar. 1/4
He also served during two campaigns as chief of the information service, supplying news and political points to members of the press.
1935 E. S. Hedges in 35
An information service which distributes in-coming information to interested quarters can be more effective than one which merely renders the information available on request.
2001 May 44/2
Access to many of the information services is actually fee-based.
1950 38 278/2
A consideration of the effects of information storage and information transfer on physical, chemical, biological, psychological, and sociological systems.
2003 31 Oct. 800/1
The remodeling of synapses is a fundamental mechanism for information storage and processing in the brain.
1904 10 Dec. 9/3
When for any reason a Ministry is attacked, its information system is denounced as delation.
1946 P. Crawford in
As the number, speed, and lethality of missiles increase, it becomes necessary to place a relatively small number of human operators at the center of an elaborate information system involving a large quantity of powerful computing equipment.
1982 J. Campbell iii. xv. 174
Rules stored in the information system of DNA are responsible for the rich complexity of body and brain.
2006 20 Apr. 41/1
You will need to demonstrate a track record in the delivery of change management and experience in managing information systems.
1949 20 Oct. 20/4
This is the formal means of information transfer.
2005 169 669
Sensory neurons in the retina..are able to continuously adjust their synaptic output to changing inputs and thus optimize information transfer.
The first appointment announced gave general satisfaction, being that of Moses P. Handy as chief of the ‘World's fair department of promotion and publicity.’ In plain English this means the newspaper advertising and information work.
In information work initiative is of high importance.
2002 P. Augar & J. Palmer ii. 26
Manufacturing and services were transformed by new technologies, becoming more and more dependent on knowledge and information work.
With participles and verbal nouns.
The information carrying slips or coupons A, C, D, E and F are all similarly numbered.
1962 4 68
The information-carrying capacity of a wave depends directly on the frequency.
1997 R. Portanova in R. C. Ward vi. 83/2
A hormone is an information-carrying molecule.
1893 W. G. Collingwood II. i. iv. 41
The intelligent analysis of words and thoughts and feelings of great authors, as opposed to..superficial information-gathering.
1967 N. S. M. Cox & M. W. Grose 70
A subject-specialist studies the information needs and information-gathering habits of a group of teachers.
1995 June 10/2
Unwanted mail, ‘invisible’ information gathering, and identity theft topped the list of consumer privacy concerns.
information-giving adj. and n.
1829 N. L. Beamish I. i. 8
‘Shure Masther Pierce is goin' for a sowger,’ ejaculated Pat, with an information-giving face.
a1832 J. Bentham
II. iv. 211
Discourse may wound by information-giving.
1908 1 July 6/3
The first products of Canada, states one of the numerous information-giving tablets, are worth thirty million dollars a year.
1927 J. Adams iv. 122
Instruction must be distinguished from mere information-giving.
1970 L. M. Lessinger in A. C. Ornstein
The teaching role will finally change from information-giving to directing learning.
The course is an information-giving course, not based on personal or group therapy sessions.
information-handling adj. and n.
1950 Oct. 399/1
Information-handling machines where emphasis is on logical competence.
1962 R. L. Meier vii. 132
The identification of a human capacity for information handling.
1989 13 4
The understanding of database information-handling.
5 Nov. 15
A dominant position in the information handling software market.
information-seeking adj. and n.
1869 P. Hingston in Pref. 51
With due regard to the exactitude and accuracy of statement expected by information-seeking readers in a book of travels.
1956 J. Klein x. 140
The whole elaborate process of information-seeking, evaluation and decision.
9 Feb. 8
Book-reading, information-seeking villagers in North Devon have started a campaign to save their local library.
With agent nouns.
1964 72 518
The Commissariat..acts like a mentor, a co-ordinator, an expert, and an information broker.
His reputation as a political guru and information broker has made him an important member of the informally dubbed ‘Off the Record Club’.
1899 H. S. Clark xviii. 283
Independent action..directed against one of the government's information gatherers.
1964 M. McLuhan
ii. xxviii. 302
Man the food-gatherer reappears incongruously as information-gatherer.
20 May 10
You have to be a very special sort of woman to deal with all the pressures while at the same time being a relaxed and highly efficient information gatherer.
information age n. the era in which the retrieval, management, and transmission of information, esp. by using computer technology, is a principal (commercial) activity; cf. .
1960 R. S. Leghorn in H. B. Maynard xlvii. 1024
Present and anticipated spectacular informational achievements will usher in public recognition of the ‘information age’, probably under a more symbolic title.
1971 M. McLuhan 8 Mar.
I suggest that it can be the basis for a complete restatement of political and economic realities in the information age of the wired planet.
2002 P. Kotler et al. i. 6
The information age has created hypercompetitive markets.
information architect n. Computing a person who works in the field of information architecture.
1966 J. McLaughlin v. 63
These preliminary analyses are generally undertaken by the management of the firm itself, often in conjunction with a professional information architect.
1996 June 38/1
Web designers see their function as that of an information architect.
24 June 12
Information architects..make sites work, and increase their usefulness to the visitor.
information architecture n. Computing the manner in which information is stored, organized, or disseminated, (now) esp. online or on a website.
1969 D. W. Miller & M. K. Starr
Similar insights concerning the economics of information architecture can usually be obtained from descriptive models by using appropriate heuristic procedures.
1971 Mar. 47/1
To implement such multilevel information architecture, one need not develop all three levels at once.
1997 Jan. 36/2
The first order of business in..information architecture is to create a list of all the..services you plan to offer on your Web site.
4 July d5
One..producer with five to 10 years of experience in information architecture and design.
information booth n. a (temporary) booth where information is provided to the public, esp. on a particular subject.
1892 10 Sept. 7/1
Hich school cadets assigned to information booths.
1954 M. E. Treadwell xxxiv. 692
Small information booths were set up in department stores..and other places where women were more likely to go.
4 Feb. 21
A 12-month beano organised by the city fathers, with an information booth beside the State Opera.
information bureau n. an office or department which provides information to the public; (also in extended use) a person considered as a source of information.
Information bureau for friends of arriving emigrants.
1922 E. Wallace vii. 44
Well, Jebson... You're a pretty fine information bureau! You told me that Patience hadn't a ghost of a chance.
1968 4 July 31/3
The information bureau of the Disabled Living Activities Group.
26 Aug. 4
The information bureau moved to bigger premises..to deal with the increased demand for its services.
information explosion n. a rapid increase in the amount of information available, (now) esp. as a result of the increased use, availability, and sophistication of information technology.
1941 30 Nov. 10/3
Are people better informed than they used to be? Answer: Yes, thanks to the information explosion.
1960 24 May 19/2
The information explosion in which the field of science alone estimates that the amount of material available has doubled in the last 10 years.
14 Mar. 7
The committee agreed to a co-ordinated approach to plagiarism in light of the information explosion which has given students more opportunities to cheat.
information gap n. a deficiency or disparity in access to information.
1891 Jan. 45/1
The five little books..fill what may be termed the information gap, so noticeable in most school readers published in the United States.
1964 20 Aug. 38/2
There is an information gap of major dimensions between people of advanced education and the broad mass public.
Seoul has been pushing its e-governance initiative since 2002 with the goal of narrowing the information gap between cities and regional villages.
information officer n. a person whose job is to provide information.
1889 vii. 605
The Argentine government maintains information officers abroad,..furnishing whatever data are required respecting the laws, usages, and wealth of the republic.
1947 2 240
I am not a librarian at all; I am not even a trained information officer.
2000 D. Bailey 8
I was an information officer with the provincial government.
information operator n. U.S. a telephone operator who provides information such as telephone numbers, the time, etc., often free of charge; cf. sense .
Mrs. McSherry..having been until recently in the employ of the Union Telephone Co. as its information operator.
1952 8 Dec. 15/7
Information operators were busy yesterday answering queries from people who had dialed the old four-digit number.
2002 D. Ehrenfeld 46
The artificial information operator at 411.
information overload n. exposure to or provision of too much information; a problematic situation or state of mental stress arising from this (cf. ).
1962 R. L. Meier vii. 132
The threat of information overload... The problems of widespread saturation in communications flow may arise within the next half century.
The report..found that half of the managers already complained of information overload, partly caused by ‘enormous’ amounts of unsolicited information, and the same proportion expected the Internet to become a prime cause of the problem in the next two years.
2001 C. Glazebrook 81
Thank you, Mickey. No need for information overload.
information-poor n. and adj.
(a) n. (with the and plural concord) people who lack adequate access to information (esp. that considered important for full participation in society or politics), as a class;
(b) adj. lacking access to such information; (also) containing or providing little information.
1970 E. B. Parker in H. Sackman & N. Nie 53
Will the information utilities..be utilized..to exacerbate the serious tensions in our society by further widening the gulf between the information-rich and the information-poor?
1974 G. G. Unruh & W. M. Alexander
Schools..continue to design their programs for an information-poor society.
1985 13 436
The more interesting PP methods are able to ignore irrelevant (i.e. noisy and information-poor) variables.
2000 26 Mar. 2/5
Ironical, isn't it, that the so-called information poor may be sitting on a gold mine of information stored in the DNA of the plants they use daily.
information processing n. the processing of information (by a machine or by an organism) so as to yield new or more useful information; frequently attrib.; cf.
1950 4 31
Automatic digital computers belong to a class of devices which may be described by the term ‘information processing systems’.
It is a fundamental requirement of any information processing system to ensure that the data..is maintained at an acceptable level of accuracy, and is protected against corruption.
2005 12 May p. vii
Cubozoans, or box jellyfish, each have twenty-four eyes of four types, but no central brain for information processing.
information retrieval n. the tracing and recovery of information using reference materials, esp. the recovery of information stored in a computer system.
1950 C. N. Mooers (Zator Techn. Bull. No. 48) 5
The requirements of information retrieval, of finding information whose location or very existence is a-priori unknown.
1972 7 61
Prof. D. Raj Reddy offers a set of exercises in..language translation, poetry concordance, and information retrieval to interested readers.
2003 7 June 59 (Advt.)
You will take on a wide remit that includes information retrieval, analysis, visualisation and road mapping.
information revolution n. the increase in the availability of information and the changes in the ways it is stored and disseminated that have resulted from the use of computers, esp. in respect of their economic and industrial impact.
1961 25 3/2
We are entering upon an Information Revolution in which the supply of data increases by geometric progression.
1997 J. Seabrook v. 133
In the Information Revolution we can get machines to do most of the grunt work.
2006 21 Dec. 18/2
American policy-makers..are dealing with the ongoing ‘Information Revolution’ that Boots dates from the 1990s.
information-rich adj. and n.
(a) adj. containing, providing, or possessing a great deal of information; (also) having easy access to information (esp. that considered important for full participation in society or politics);
(b) n. (with the and plural concord) people who have access to such information, as a class.
1959 C. B. Anfinsen x. 205
These two cellular components are somehow linked in the process of establishing information-rich biosynthetic machinery in the cytoplasm.
1970 E. B. Parker in H. Sackman & N. Nie 53
Will the information utilities..be utilized..to exacerbate the serious tensions in our society by further widening the gulf between the information-rich and the information-poor?
1972 Feb. 73
Two aspects of the communications structure of information-rich open societies are destroying two classical functions of the school.
2000 2 Jan. i. 21/2
The information-rich among us will move further into the virtual world made possible by information technology.
information room n. a room provided as a place where information may be gathered and shared; spec. (in the United Kingdom) in a police headquarters (see quot. ).
1874 8 573
My memory also records the Mechanics' Institute, the information-room, and sundry other comforts which the Darlington Committee had bethought themselves of for our behest.
1913 14 May 11/1
The appointment of a clerk to be designated ‘Information Deputy’, who shall have an ‘information room’.
1958 A. Garfitt I. iii. 77
An Information Room is established at some [police] headquarters and is the centre through which information, particularly as to crime and suspected crime, can be disseminated by wireless, teleprinter or telephone.
12 Dec. 6
Parents have their own information room, where they can chat to staff about different aspects of care.
information security n. the protection of information, now esp. electronic information, from unauthorized access or use; (also) the action taken to protect information or data; frequently attrib.
1947 13 Nov. 4/3
The board was ordered, as part of Mr. Truman's loyalty program, to draft minimum requirements for information security throughout the government.
1989 Aug. 104/3
How many more of these serious [virus] attacks need to occur before information security becomes less of a choice and recognized more as a way of doing business today?
2004 V. C. Joshi viii. 114
The extent of the information security programme should be commensurate with the degree of risk associated with the institution's systems, networks, and information assets.
information superhighway n. Computing and Telecommunications a route or network for the high-speed transfer of information; esp.
(a) a proposed national fibre-optic network in the United States;
(b) the Internet; also in extended use.
1983 3 Jan. 40/1
Two information superhighways being built of fiber-optic cable will link Boston, New York, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C.
1993 26 Oct. c9/1
One of the technologies Vice President Al Gore is pushing is the information superhighway, which will link everyone at home or office to everything else.
2000 16 Mar. (Connected section) 10/5
Schools using telephone modems or ISDN digital phone lines for connecting to the internet are discovering that traffic along the information superhighway often slows down to a crawl.
2001 19 Mar. 105/1
The spinal cord, the body's information superhighway.
information war n. a war during which the reporting or manipulation of information is particularly important or notable; a conflict over the possession or distribution of information; (also) an instance or period of information warfare (now the usual sense).
(title of transcript)
At Issue 69: The Information War, National Educational Television.
1974 T. L. Stoddard et al. 95
The information war continued into the early 1970s. The influence of the media, like that of the educational system, was just being fully explored.
26 May 17
The Argentines have..been winning the information war hands down... Millions of viewers in friendly and neutral countries..have by default been receiving a one-sided anti-British picture so far as actuality material goes.
2002 D. Verton viii. 178
Undoubtedly, the programs were also stored as part of a virtual cyberarsenal for possible use in a future information war.
information warfare n. the strategic use of information or information technology for intelligence-gathering or military purposes; the deliberate disruption of information and communications systems, esp. by a terrorist or subversive group.
1981 5 Feb. a23/3
A form of information warfare develops, with an escalation in the number of leaks, and with foreign intelligence establishments learning a great deal about America's military capabilities.
1993 A. Toffler & H. Toffler iv. xvi. 140
In the office of the U.S. Secretary of Defense there is a unit..whose primary task is weighing the relative strength of opposing military forces... This unit has shown a strong interest in information warfare and what might be called info-doctrine.
Police and the security services are increasingly worried about the potential of information warfare and are working to combat the threat.
Back to top
This entry has been updated (OED Third Edition, September 2009).
In this entry:
In other dictionaries:
- My entries(1)
- informally, adv.1594
- informance, n.11604
- informance, n.21970
- informant, adj. and n.1632
- informate, v.1594
- informatic, adj.1969
- informatical, adj.1969
- informatician, n.1969
- informatics, n.1967
- information, n.a1387
- informational, adj.1821
- informationally, adv.1927
- information fatigue, n.1991
- informationless, adj.1901
- information science, n.1955
- information scientis...1953
- information technolo...1952
- information theory, n.1948
- informative, adj.a1398
- informatively, adv.1656
- informativeness, n.1907
- informatization, n.1984
- informator, n.1483
- informator choristar...1664
- informatorily, adv.1920
- informatory, adj.?a1475
- informed, adj.1a1500
- informed, adj.2a1530
- informedly, adv.11642
- informedly, adv.21670
- informedness, n.1899
- informer, n.?c1422
- informercial, n.1980
- informidable, adj.1596
- informing, n.a1382
- informing, adj.c1443
- informity, n.1583
- informosome, n.1964
- informous, adj.1610
- informulable, adj.1884