in·​ter·​face | \ ˈin-tər-ˌfās How to pronounce interface (audio) \

Definition of interface

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : the place at which independent and often unrelated systems meet and act on or communicate with each other the man-machine interface
b : the means by which interaction or communication is achieved at an interface
2 : a surface forming a common boundary of two bodies, spaces, or phases an oil-water interface


interfaced; interfacing; interfaces

Definition of interface (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to connect by means of an interface interface a machine with a computer
2 : to serve as an interface for

intransitive verb

1 : to become interfaced
2 : to interact or coordinate harmoniously

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Other Words from interface


interfacial \ ˌin-​tər-​ˈfā-​shəl How to pronounce interfacial (audio) \ adjective

Examples of interface in a Sentence

Noun the interface between engineering and science The software has a user interface that's easy to operate. We installed an interface between the computer and the typesetting machine. Verb interface a machine with a computer the point at which the two machines interface
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Over the last decade, BrainGate has significantly enhanced its user interface and proven its efficacy. Jeff Stibel, USA TODAY, "The future of 'brain chip' technology: Balancing whether we can with whether we should," 11 Sep. 2020 New York Post, after Elon Musk trotted out three pigs to demonstrate the technology being developed by his brain-machine interface startup Neuralink. Rebecca Robbins, STAT, "STAT Health Tech: Google’s government contract to use AI in cancer diagnosis & new data on virtual diabetes coaching," 3 Sep. 2020 Use the two-button interface—one on the side, one on the tail—to toggle through its five power levels, from very dim to blindingly bright, or activate the strobe mode for emergencies. Popular Science, "Flashlights for emergency scenarios and outdoor fun," 27 Aug. 2020 That comes on top of improvements to the Xbox One app store interface, which now loads in just over two seconds after an update last month. Kyle Orland, Ars Technica, "Menus on Xbox Series X will look a lot like those on Xbox One," 19 Aug. 2020 Jani has since tried out some of the homegrown Indian alternatives such as Chingari, Mitron and Moj, but says their user interface and recommendation algorithms aren't up to TikTok's standards yet. Rishi Iyengar, CNN, "This is what it's like when a country actually bans TikTok," 13 Aug. 2020 TikTok has taken off with young Americans who find its interface easy to navigate, lowering the barrier to making entertaining content. Ashley Cullins, The Hollywood Reporter, "Trump's TikTok War Pits Free Speech Against National Security," 11 Aug. 2020 But its influence is even greater in such places as Cambodia, where the social media platform is the only digital interface for millions of people., "Threatened by Facebook disinformation, a Buddhist monk flees Cambodia," 23 Aug. 2020 Robinhood has also come in for significant criticism over what detractors describe as a casino-like interface—including displays of confetti when customers make a trade—that encourages irresponsible trading. Jeff John Roberts, Fortune, "Robinhood raises $200M as IPO speculation swirls," 17 Aug. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Any opportunity to interface with that type of leadership — Doyle was the real deal. Greg Jefferson,, "Jefferson: Selling San Antonio ‘with a straight face’ — that’s Jenna Saucedo-Herrera’s job, and her days are long," 10 Sep. 2020 With nearly all of the district's 1,900 students set to do live remote learning, where teachers interface with students in real time, bandwidth had to be stronger. al, "Alabama school district gives one-on-one technical help for remote learning families," 23 Aug. 2020 When face recognition is not available, mobile apps can interface with kiosks and gates to reduce touch. Jackie Snow, National Geographic, "Nano needles. Facial recognition. Air travel adapts to make travel safer," 13 Aug. 2020 Darby took a four-hour crash course so that he could be deputized as a poll worker, enabling him to interface with voting platforms. Tim Perry, CBS News, "State Farm Arena workers take on polling place responsibilities for Election Day, amid COVID," 13 Aug. 2020 My job does not require me to interface with a potentially armed public. Tiffany Chioma Anaebere, Scientific American, "Policing Can Take a Lesson from Health Care," 10 June 2020 Miles College purchased laptops and broadband discount cards for students and faculty who lacked the hardware and high-speed internet access necessary to interface online. Safiya Charles And Byron Dobson, USA TODAY, "Historically black colleges fight for survival, reopening amid coronavirus pandemic," 9 June 2020 How the program will interface with the White House Coronavirus Task Force, led by Vice President Mike Pence, is not entirely clear. Elizabeth Weise, USA TODAY, "In race for coronavirus vaccine, will Operation Warp Speed focus the work or politicize it?," 24 May 2020 Scripps Health is also expanding its use of telemedicine to limit the number of health care workers who interface with sick patients. NBC News, "'Not our first rodeo with new germs': To prep for coronavirus, hospitals use lessons learned in past epidemics," 26 Feb. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'interface.' 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 interface


1882, in the meaning defined at sense 2


1962, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

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Time Traveler for interface

Time Traveler

The first known use of interface was in 1882

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Statistics for interface

Last Updated

15 Sep 2020

Cite this Entry

“Interface.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Sep. 2020.

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More Definitions for interface


How to pronounce interface (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of interface

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the place or area at which different things meet and communicate with or affect each other
: a system that is used for operating a computer : a system that controls the way information is shown to a computer user and the way the user is able to work with the computer
: an area or system through which one machine is connected to another machine



English Language Learners Definition of interface (Entry 2 of 2)

: to connect or become connected : to connect by means of an interface


in·​ter·​face | \ ˈint-ər-ˌfās How to pronounce interface (audio) \

Medical Definition of interface

: a surface forming a common boundary of two bodies, spaces, or phases interfaces between various tissues such as skin, fatty tissue, and muscle— H. P. Schwan

Other Words from interface

interface transitive verb interfaced; interfacing
interfacial \ ˌint-​ər-​ˈfā-​shəl How to pronounce interfacial (audio) \ adjective

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