- The definition of a matrix is an environment in which something is created or the rock in which a crystal or fossil is embedded.
- An example of a matrix is the Constitution from which democracy was born.
- An example of a matrix is a chunk of rock in which amethyst crystals are formed.
nounpl. matrices or matrixes
- Archaic the womb; uterus
- that within which, or within and from which, something originates, takes form, or develops; specif.,
- a die or mold for casting or shaping
- an impression from which a large number of phonograph records can be duplicated
- any nonliving, intercellular substance in which living cells are embedded, as in bone, cartilage, etc.
- the formative cells from which a nail, tooth, etc. grows
- Electronics a process in which several signals are combined for transmission or recording and then separated for reception or playback
- Geol. the rock or earthy material in which a crystal, pebble, fossil, etc. is enclosed or embedded
- Linguis. a main or independent clause
- Math. a set of numbers or terms arranged in rows and columns between parentheses or double lines
- a metal mold for casting the face of type
- a papier-mâché, plaster, or similar impression of type, etc., from which a plate can be made, as in stereotypy
Origin of matrixLate Latin womb, public register, origin ; from Classical Latin breeding animal ; from mater (gen. matris), mother
nounpl. ma·tri·ces or ma·trix·es
- A situation or surrounding substance within which something else originates, develops, or is contained: “Freedom of expression is the matrix, the indispensable condition, of nearly every form of freedom” (Benjamin N. Cardozo).
- The womb.
- Anatomy a. The formative cells or tissue of a specialized structure such as a hair, nail, claw, or tooth.b. See ground substance.
- Geology a. The solid matter in which a fossil or crystal is embedded.b. Groundmass.
- A mold or die.
- The principal metal in an alloy, as the iron in steel.
- A binding substance, as cement in concrete.
- a. Mathematics A rectangular array of numeric or algebraic quantities subject to mathematical operations.b. Something resembling such an array, as in the regular formation of elements into columns and rows.
- Computers The network of intersections between input and output leads in a computer, functioning as an encoder or a decoder.
- Printing a. A mold used in stereotyping and designed to receive positive impressions of type or illustrations from which metal plates can be cast. Also called mat2.b. A metal plate used for casting typefaces.
- An electroplated impression of a phonograph record used to make duplicate records.
Origin of matrixMiddle English matrice, from Old French, from Late Latin mātrīx, mātrīc-, from Latin, breeding-animal, from māter, mātr-, mother; see māter- in Indo-European roots.
(plural matrices or matrixes)
- (now rare) The womb.
- (biology) The material or tissue in which more specialized structures are embedded.
- (biology) An extracellular matrix, the material or tissue between the cells of animals or plants.
- (biology) Part of the mitochondrion.
- (biology) The medium in which bacteria are cultured.
- (mathematics) A rectangular arrangement of numbers or terms having various uses such as transforming coordinates in geometry, solving systems of linear equations in linear algebra and representing graphs in graph theory.
- (computing) A two-dimensional array.
- A table of data.
- (geology) A geological matrix, the outer material of a rock consisting of larger grains embedded in a material consisting of smaller ones.
- (archaeology) The sediment surrounding and including the artifacts, features, and other materials at a site.
- (analytical chemistry) The environment from which a given sample is taken.
matrix - Computer Definition
Means many things. It is, for one, the world’s telecommunications network. Because of its importance to the world, a number of artists have been drawn to the concept of a matrix and have incorporated it into their creative works. Thus, The Matrix is the name given to a book, a movie, and a computer game—all describing a virtual world of information similar in some ways to the Internet but completely different in other ways.
“The Matrix,” upon which fiction novels, movies, and games have been based, is a computer-generated three-dimensional world in which users can do anything because the world comprises ICons, or IC (pronounced “ice”). IC, known more formally as Intrusion Countermeasure electronics, are programs stopping illegal access by intruders to computers and highly sensitive information. For example, IC might look like a bull with guns or a moose with guns, depending on what type of IC it is and what its function is. IC comes in many forms, including Black IC (the lethal form) and Probe IC (which searches for intruders and then fires back with some nasty stuff intended to stop the intruder in his or her tracks). Moreover, in “The Matrix,” a node (actually part of a host, such as a sub-system, and usually represented by a virtual landscape) might be seen as a hole or a gas pump. If that node is destroyed, the hole might suddenly disappear, or the gas pump might quickly explode. In this virtual world, a user will look like whatever he or she asked the Cyberdeck to identify him or her as. What is more, users in a nonsubmersive system cannot be hurt because the user is represented by an Icon and is not physically there. The ICon represents a computer system, and any attacks directed at the user’s ICon can damage his or her system.
Since 2001, the term matrix has gained a whole new meaning. The Florida police department operated an anti-terrorism information system called the Multistate Anti-Terrorism Information Exchange, or Matrix, to locate patterns among people and events by pooling police records with commercial data on U.S. adults. The Justice Department provided $4 million to broaden the Matrix program on a national basis, and the Department of Homeland Security pledged $8 million to assist with the Matrix program expansion—so that Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and New York could join the Matrix network.
Clutton, R. The Matrix. [Online, November 26, 1999.] R. Clutton Website. http://tip.net.au/~rclutton/matrix.html; Wilson, C. CRS Report for Congress: Computer Attack and Cyberterrorism: Vulnerabilities and Policy Issues for Congress. [Online, October 17, 2003.] CRS Report Website. http://www.fas.org/irp/crs/RL32114.pdf.