The Jargon File

A Chronology...The Jargon FileComputer Dictionary
See PHASE (of people).
n. A situation wherein two or more processes are unable to proceed because each is waiting for another to do something. A common example is a program communicating to a PTY or STY, which may find itself waiting for output from the PTY/STY before sending anything more to it, while the PTY/STY is similarly waiting for more input from the controlling program before outputting anything. (This particular flavor of deadlock is called "starvation". Another common flavor is "constipation", where each process is trying to send stuff to the other, but all buffers are full because nobody is reading anything.) See DEADLY EMBRACE.
n. Same as DEADLOCK (q.v.), though usually used only when exactly two processes are involved. DEADLY EMBRACE is the more popular term in Europe; DEADLOCK in the United States.
adj. Yet another term of disgust used to describe a program. The connotation in this case is that the program works as designed, but the design is bad. For example, a program that generates large numbers of meaningless error messages implying it is on the point of imminent collapse.
(dee'mun) n. A portion of a program which is not invoked explicitly, but which lays dormant waiting for some condition(s) to occur. See DAEMON. The distinction is that demons are usually processes within a program, while daemons are usually programs running on an operating system. Demons are particularly common in AI programs. For example, a knowledge manipulation program might implement inference rules as demons. Whenever a new piece of knowledge was added, various demons would activate (which demons depends on the particular piece of data) and would create additional pieces of knowledge by applying their respective inference rules to the original piece. These new pieces could in turn activate more demons as the inferences filtered down through chains of logic. Meanwhile the main program could continue with whatever its primary task was.
(dee-ah'blow) [from the Diablo printer] 1.n. Any letter-quality printing device.
2.v. To produce letter-quality output from such a device.
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