- The definition of an artifact is something made by humans and often is a primitive tool, structure, or part of a functional item.
An example of an artifact would be a cooking pot found by archaeologists that Ancient Romans might have used.
- any object made by human work; esp., a simple or primitive tool, weapon, vessel, etc.
- Histology any nonnatural feature or structure accidentally introduced into something being observed or studied
Origin of artifactClassical Latin arte, by skill (abl. of ars, art) + factum, thing made (see fact)
- An object produced or shaped by human craft, especially a tool, weapon, or ornament of archaeological or historical interest.
- Something viewed as a product of human conception or agency rather than an inherent element: “Morality is an artifact of human culture, devised to help us negotiate social relations” (Michael Pollan).
- A phenomenon or feature not originally present or expected and caused by an interfering external agent, action, or process, as an unwanted feature in a microscopic specimen after fixation, in a digitally reproduced image, or in a digital audio recording.
- An inaccurate observation, effect, or result, especially one resulting from the technology used in scientific investigation or from experimental error: The apparent pattern in the data was an artifact of the collection method.
Origin of artifactLatin arte, ablative of ars, art; see art1 + factum, something made (from neuter past participle of facere, to make; see dhē- in Indo-European roots).
- An object made or shaped by human hand.
- (archaeology) An object, such as a tool, weapon or ornament, of archaeological or historical interest, especially such an object found at an archaeological excavation.
- The dig produced many Roman artifacts.
- Something viewed as a product of human conception or agency rather than an inherent element.
- A structure or finding in an experiment or investigation that is not a true feature of the object under observation, but is a result of external action, the test arrangement, or an experimental error.
- The spot on his lung turned out to be an artifact of the X-ray process.
- An object made or shaped by some agent or intelligence, not necessarily of direct human origin.
- (computing) A perceptible distortion that appears in a digital image, audio or video file as a result of applying a lossy compression algorithm.
- This JPEG image has been so highly compressed that it has too many unsightly compression artifacts, making it unsuitable for the cover of our magazine.
artifact - Computer Definition
Unintended and unwanted distortions or other aberrations in reproduced audio or video due to transmission errors or signal processing operations. Artifacts often result from the use of lossy compression algorithms at high compression ratios. Artifacts in video images can manifest as jagged blockings or a tiling effect known as aliasing, banding of colors, white spots, and even dropped frames. See also aliasing, compression, distortion, lossy compression, and signal.
(1) Any element in a software development project. It includes documentation, test plans, images, data files and executable modules.
(2) A distortion in an image or sound caused by a limitation or malfunction in the hardware or software. Artifacts may or may not be easily detectable. Under intense inspection, one might find artifacts all the time, but a few pixels out of balance or a few milliseconds of abnormal sound often go undetected. Analog Artifacts In films and film-based videotape, artifacts such as blotches, scratches and flicker are commonly found, especially in older movies. Imperfections in the camera lenses and CCDs, and the silver-grain film itself, can generate "noise," which appears as tiny background specks, making the image softer. The electronic recording of analog videotapes can introduce noise as well. See noise. Digital Artifacts Artifacts are a natural byproduct of digital compression methods such as JPEG and MPEG, which permanently discard pixels. The greater the compression used, the more artifacts are likely, and fast motion sequences are a major contributor. As TV screens become larger, the distortions are more noticeable. In digital cameras, artifacts may arise when performing digital zoom. When analog material is converted to digital, tiny discrepancies (quantization errors) may result. See blocking artifacts, mosquito noise, feathering and quantization error.