1 a : a usually minor malfunction; also : an unexpected defect, fault, flaw, or imperfection
b : a minor problem that causes a temporary setback : snag
2 : a false or spurious electronic signal
Did You Know?
There's a glitch in the etymology of glitch—the origins of the word are not known for sure, though it may derive from the Yiddish glitsh, meaning "slippery place." Glitch started showing up in print in English in the mid-20th century in reference to a brief unexpected surge of electrical current. The term was new enough in 1962 that the astronaut John Glenn, writing in the book Into Orbit, felt the need to explain the term to his readers: "Literally, a glitch is a spike or change in voltage in an electrical circuit which takes place when the circuit suddenly has a new load put on it." Today, you don't have to be an astronaut to be familiar with the word glitch, which can be used of any minor malfunction or snag.
The festival had an excellent lineup of performers, and the few glitches with the sound system did not seriously detract from the overall quality of the entertainment.
"A computer glitch delayed the start of the Saturday press run; by the time it was fixed, the judgment call was made to postpone distribution until Sunday, rather than send carriers out after dark on Saturday." — Jeff Pieters, The Post-Bulletin (Rochester, Minnesota), 9 Mar. 2019
Test Your Vocabulary with M-W Quizzes
Test Your Vocabulary
Fill in the blanks to complete a word for a cause of error or equipment malfunction conceived of as a small mischievous gnome: _ _ em _ i _.VIEW THE ANSWER
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