configuration

noun
con·​fig·​u·​ra·​tion | \ kən-ˌfi-gyə-ˈrā-shən How to pronounce configuration (audio) , ˌkän-, -gə-ˈrā-\

Definition of configuration

1a : relative arrangement of parts or elements: such as
(1) : shape
(2) : contour of land configuration of the mountains
(3) : functional arrangement a small business computer system in its simplest configuration
b : something (such as a figure, contour, pattern, or apparatus) that results from a particular arrangement of parts or components
c : the stable structural makeup of a chemical compound especially with reference to the space relations of the constituent atoms
2 : gestalt personality configuration

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Other Words from configuration

configurational \ kən-​ˌfi-​gyə-​ˈrā-​shnəl How to pronounce configurational (audio) , -​shə-​nᵊl , ˌkän-​ , -​gə-​ˈrā-​ \ adjective
configurationally adverb
configurative \ kən-​ˈfi-​gyə-​rə-​tiv How to pronounce configurative (audio) , -​ˈfi-​gə-​ , ˌkän-​ \ adjective

Did You Know?

The term is very common in computer science and mathematics, and in scientific and technological fields in general. Thus, for example, two scientists won a 1962 Nobel Prize for their description of the configuration of the DNA molecule. Since then, researchers have studied what different configurations within the DNA strands mean and what they control, and genetic engineers have tried to configure or reconfigure DNA in new ways to prevent or treat diseases.

Examples of configuration in a Sentence

We'll have to change the configuration of the system to accommodate the new server. the basic configuration of the building is that of a geodesic dome

Recent Examples on the Web

Traffic patterns have shifted to the north, but current lane configurations will remain. cleveland.com, "Avon’s Heritage Gazebo celebrates 20 years as center landmark: Short Takes on Avon, Avon Lake, and North Ridgeville," 5 July 2019 The bike-car configuration for electric trains simply cannot work. Letters To The Editor, The Mercury News, "Letter: Bike-car decision is going to impact Caltrain for years," 5 July 2019 But any biologist will tell you that not everyone falls neatly into these two categories — nature offers many more than two configurations for human beings. BostonGlobe.com, "Trump wants to deny transgender rights on religious grounds. But what if gender identity, itself, is a matter of the soul?," 5 July 2019 All eight episodes are being released by Netflix on July 4, and the Uncle-Sam-against-the-Ruskies plot configuration leans heavily on red-blooded patriotism. Sophie Gilbert, The Atlantic, "The American Paranoia of Stranger Things 3," 4 July 2019 Those issues were blamed on a server configuration change. Leada Gore | Lgore@al.com, al.com, "Facebook, Instagram down: Outages, issues with photos reported," 3 July 2019 FrameView captures game performance metrics including average and percentile frame-per-second (FPS) data for both single- and multi-GPU configurations. Brad Chacos, PCWorld, "Nvidia's GeForce RTX 'Super' cards aim to one-up AMD with more power for the same price," 2 July 2019 The new configurations could be slipped into existing reactors with little modification, so they could be phased in during the 2020s. Mark Fischetti, Scientific American, "Safer Nuclear Reactors Are on the Way," 1 July 2019 Option 3 would have the same grade configurations as Option 2, but would utilize the current junior high as a third elementary campus. Staff Report, Houston Chronicle, "Demographic report tells Needville ISD of growth ahead," 30 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'configuration.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of configuration

1559, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for configuration

earlier, "relative position of the planets," borrowed from Middle French & Late Latin; Middle French, "form, relative position of the planets," borrowed from Late Latin configūrātiōn-, configūrātiō "comparison, shaping," from Latin configūrāre "to shape, mold" + -tiōn-, -tiō, suffix of verbal action — more at configure

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Statistics for configuration

Last Updated

10 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for configuration

The first known use of configuration was in 1559

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More Definitions for configuration

configuration

noun

English Language Learners Definition of configuration

: the way the parts of something are arranged
computers : the way a computer system or program is prepared for a particular use

configuration

noun
con·​fig·​u·​ra·​tion | \ kən-ˌfig-(y)ə-ˈrā-shən, ˌkän- How to pronounce configuration (audio) \

Medical Definition of configuration

1a : relative arrangement of parts or elements
b : the stable structural makeup of a chemical compound especially with reference to the space relations of the constituent atoms
2 : gestalt personality configuration

Other Words from configuration

configurational \ -​shnəl, -​shən-​ᵊl How to pronounce configurational (audio) \ adjective
configurationally \ -​ē How to pronounce configurationally (audio) \ adverb
configurative \ -​ˈfig-​(y)ə-​rət-​iv How to pronounce configurative (audio) \ adjective

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Comments on configuration

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