program

noun
pro·​gram | \ ˈprō-ˌgram How to pronounce program (audio) , -grəm How to pronounce program (audio) \

Definition of program

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 [Late Latin programma, from Greek] : a public notice
2a : a brief usually printed outline of the order to be followed, of the features to be presented, and the persons participating (as in a public performance)
b : the performance of a program especially : a performance broadcast on radio or television
3 : a plan or system under which action may be taken toward a goal
6a : a sequence of coded instructions that can be inserted into a mechanism (such as a computer)
b dated : a complete plan for solving a problem by the use of a mechanism (such as a computer) that includes both instructions to be inserted into the mechanism and plans for human activities such as interpreting output
c : the genes or sequences of DNA or RNA that are part of an organism or cell and encode or determine a process, trait, or behavior … a mouse in which a tiny but crucial bit of the genetic program has been eliminated.— Bruce Fellman also : a process, trait, or behavior determined by or as if by the genetic material of an organism Orb webs are marvels of geometry and construction. They are built according to a complex behavioral program, which is highly flexible in some respects and very precise in others. — Michael H. Robinson

program

verb
pro·​gram | \ ˈprō-ˌgram How to pronounce program (audio) , -grəm \
variants: or less commonly
programmed or programed; programming or programing

Definition of program (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to arrange or furnish a program of or for : bill
b : to enter in a program
2 : to work out a sequence of operations to be performed by (a mechanism, such as a computer) : to provide with a program
3a : to insert a program for (a particular action) into or as if into a mechanism (such as a computer)
b : to control by or as if by a program
c(1) : to code in an organism's program
(2) : to provide with a biological program cells programmed to synthesize hemoglobin
4 : to predetermine the thinking, behavior, or operations of as if by computer programming children are programmed into violence— Lisa A. Richette

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Other Words from program

Verb

programmability \ (ˌ)prō-​ˌgra-​mə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce programmability (audio) \ noun
programmable \ ˈprō-​ˌgra-​mə-​bəl How to pronounce programmable (audio) \ adjective or noun

Synonyms for program

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of program in a Sentence

Noun a program of regular dental checkups the program will tell us the scheduled order of musical numbers Verb He programmed the computer to calculate his monthly expenses and earnings. She is learning how to program in school. Can you help me program my cell phone?
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun How MyPanera+ Coffee works Sign up for the program at www.panerabread.com/mypaneracoffee or on the Panera app. Kelly Tyko, USA TODAY, "Panera Bread's new coffee subscription program offers unlimited coffee for $8.99 a month," 27 Feb. 2020 But get this: Because Gary Rosenquist died, his wife is locked out of receiving a voucher for the Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing program. Otis R. Taylor Jr., SFChronicle.com, "An Oakland street dweller generously helped others. When he died, thieves helped themselves," 27 Feb. 2020 But the share of those eligible for the program who actually got food stamps also fell steeply from 75% in 1994 to 54% in 2001. Tracy Roof, The Conversation, "Scaling back SNAP for self-reliance clashes with the original goals of food stamps," 27 Feb. 2020 Meanwhile, The Atomic Lounge in Birmingham is a semifinalist for the third year in a row for outstanding bar program. Bob Carlton | Bcarlton@al.com, al, "Alabama chefs, restaurants, bar among James Beard semifinalists," 26 Feb. 2020 After President Trump called for the program to be canceled in 2017, it was only saved through legal challenges in the lower courts. Martin Fritz Huber, Outside Online, "The DACA Runner Who Can't Race the Olympic Trials," 26 Feb. 2020 Courtney Kaplan and Charles Namba’s Echo Park sake bar Ototo was nominated for bar program. Garrett Snyder, Los Angeles Times, "The Los Angeles chefs and restaurants nominated for 2020 James Beard Awards," 26 Feb. 2020 The good news is that the artworks that bring life to that trip are something more than mere decoration, which is true as well for the program within the hotel. Mark Lamster, Dallas News, "At two new Dallas hotels, art is the draw," 21 Feb. 2020 Heimler said the proposal for the pilot program would be modified and presented to the council. John Delapp, Houston Chronicle, "Proposal for Pasadena microtransit pilot program prompts interest, questions," 21 Feb. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb But for most, funky dreams are being largely programmed by stimuli experienced up to 90 minutes before falling asleep, Blair says. Zee Krstic, Good Housekeeping, "Here's Why You're Having Weird and Vivid Dreams During the Coronavirus Pandemic," 1 May 2020 This popular chart, courtesy of Australian graphic designer Khairul Hamdan, breaks down all the game's flower varieties into cross-breeding grids: The way these flowers are programmed certainly doesn’t bear much resemblance to real life. Caroline Delbert, Popular Mechanics, "Here's How to Grow All Animal Crossing Flowers," 13 Apr. 2020 Many of the small creatures carry viruses because their lives are short and their immune systems aren’t programmed to fight them off, Ostfeld said. Kurtis Alexander, SFChronicle.com, "As humans take animals’ territory, greater risk of contagions like coronavirus being transmitted," 7 Apr. 2020 While each playlist is algorithmically created, Teie’s expertise impacted how the algorithm was programmed, according to Spotify. Lars Brandle, Billboard, "Where My Dogs At? Spotify Launches Playlists for Pets," 15 Jan. 2020 That's because the ad displays are programmed by generating a random number of less than 3 that is checked against a value. Dan Goodin, Ars Technica, "Researchers find 17 Google Play apps that bombard users with battery-draining ads," 14 Jan. 2020 There’s no charge to view the outdoor attraction, whose 3-D graphics and 600,000-watt, concert-quality sound system are now programmed to run nonstop, 24 hours a day. Dallas News, "Mammoth Vegas video screen dwarfs the display at Cowboys Stadium," 11 Jan. 2020 Lee Holloway programmed internet security firm Cloudflare into being. Longreads, "The Top 5 Longreads of the Week," 14 Apr. 2020 To view this video please enable JavaScript, and consider upgrading to a web browser that supports HTML5 video Other museums, like Madrid’s Museo Nacional del Prado, found fluency in their social media programming well before the pandemic struck. Betsy Blumenthal, Condé Nast Traveler, "The World’s Top Museums Are Finding New Ways to Share Art During Coronavirus," 16 Apr. 2020

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

Noun

1633, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1846, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for program

Noun

French programme agenda, public notice, from Greek programma, from prographein to write before, from pro- before + graphein to write — more at carve

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Time Traveler for program

Time Traveler

The first known use of program was in 1633

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Statistics for program

Cite this Entry

“Program.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/program. Accessed 6 Jun. 2020.

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More Definitions for program

program

noun
How to pronounce program (audio) How to pronounce program (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of program

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a plan of things that are done in order to achieve a specific result
: a set of instructions that tell a computer what to do
: a thin book or a piece of paper that gives information about a concert, play, sports game, etc.

program

verb
How to pronounce program (audio)

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

: to give (a computer) a set of instructions to perform a particular action : to create a program for (a computer)
: to give (a machine) a set of instructions to perform a particular action
: to make (a person or animal) behave or think in a particular way

program

noun
pro·​gram | \ ˈprō-ˌgram How to pronounce program (audio) , -grəm \

Kids Definition of program

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a brief statement or written outline (as of a concert, play, ceremony, or religious service)
2 : performance sense 2 a television program
3 : a plan of action … this little town had the most successful school lunch program in the state.— Andrew Clements, Frindle
4 : a set of step-by-step instructions that tell a computer to do something with data

program

verb
programmed\ ˈprō-​ˌgramd , -​grəmd \; programming

Kids Definition of program (Entry 2 of 2)

: to give (a computer) a set of instructions : provide with a program

program

noun
pro·​gram
variants: or chiefly British programme \ ˈprō-​ˌgram How to pronounce programme (audio) , -​grəm How to pronounce programme (audio) \

Medical Definition of program

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the genes or sequences of DNA or RNA that are part of an organism or cell and encode or determine a process, trait, or behavior
variants: or chiefly British programme
programmed or programed; programming or programing

Medical Definition of program (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to code in an organism's program
2 : to provide with a biological program cells programmed to synthesize hemoglobin

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More from Merriam-Webster on program

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for program

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with program

Spanish Central: Translation of program

Nglish: Translation of program for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of program for Arabic Speakers

Comments on program

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