top-down

adjective
\ ˈtäp-ˈdau̇n How to pronounce top-down (audio) \

Definition of top-down

1 : controlled, directed, or instituted from the top level a top-down corporate structure
2 : proceeding by breaking large general aspects (as of a problem) into smaller more detailed constituents : working from the general to the specific top-down programming top-down design

First Known Use of top-down

1941, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for top-down

from the phrase from the top down

Learn More About top-down

Time Traveler for top-down

Time Traveler

The first known use of top-down was in 1941

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near top-down

top dollar

top-down

top drawer

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for top-down

Cite this Entry

“Top-down.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/top-down. Accessed 17 May. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Name That Color

  • a light greenish blue color
  • Name that color:
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!