- an intricate, compact electronic component or device, such as a flight recorder, that can be quickly connected or disconnected as a unit
- anything having a complex function that can be observed but whose inner workings are mysterious or unknown
- See event recorder.
- A usually large, square room with black walls used as a space for theatrical performances.
- a. A device or theoretical construct with known or specified performance characteristics but unknown or unspecified constituents and means of operation.b. Something that is mysterious, especially as to function.
(plural black boxes)
- (aviation) Informal name for the brightly colored cockpit voice recorders and flight data recorders in an aircraft designed to aid in determining the cause of an accident.
- (transport) by extension, any similar device on motor vehicles, such as rail event recorders and ship trip recorders
- A theoretical construct or device with known input and output characteristics but unknown method of operation.
black box - Computer Definition
(2) An electronic device that records airplane flight data. Officially known as a "flight data recorder," the unit is highly protected, and in the event of an accident, emits a signal for up to 30 days, even underwater. First used in the late 1950s, Australia was the first country to require their use. Trains have similar black boxes called "train event recorders," which date back to the late 19th century. Also called an "on-train monitoring recorder" (OTMR).
(3) An electronic device that records driving data in motor vehicles, most notably their speed. Officially known as an "event data recorder," automotive black boxes were first used in the late 1990s.
(4) Any custom-made electronic device can be called a black box, such as a protocol converter or encryption system. Such devices are called black boxes, because they are often housed in plain containers without logos, and their purpose may be a mystery to even the experienced observer. Yesterday's black boxes often become today's off-the-shelf products.
black box - Investment & Finance Definition
A complex software program that is used to determine a price that a security should be sold at, indicate what trades should be done, or give the result of a financial calculation. The inner workings of a black box pricing formula are not explained to the users or are very complex and hard to understand, so users refer to the end result as black box number.