Virtual meaning

vûrcho͝o-əl
Being such practically or in effect, although not in actual fact or name.

A virtual impossibility.

adjective
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The definition of virtual is something that exists in the mind, exists in essence but not in fact or created by a computer.

An example of virtual is an imaginary friend.

An example of virtual is a world created by a computer video game.

adjective
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(computers) Created, simulated, or carried on by means of a computer or computer network.

Virtual conversations in a chatroom.

adjective
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Existing or resulting in essence or effect though not in actual fact, form, or name.

The virtual extinction of the buffalo.

adjective
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(physics) Pertaining to particles in temporary existence due to the Heisenberg uncertainty principle.
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The virtual world of his computer game allowed character interaction.

adjective
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Existing in the mind, especially as a product of the imagination. Used in literary criticism of a text.
adjective
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Being in essence or effect, although not in reality. A virtual circuit, for example, is not a physical circuit, but behaves as though it were, at least in some respects.Virtual is virtually the opposite of transparent, as something transparent exists but appears almost as though it does not. See also transparent, virtual Centrex, virtual circuit, virtual path, virtual WATS, and VPN.
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In effect or essence, if not in fact or reality; imitated, simulated.

In fact a defeat on the battlefield, Tet was a virtual victory for the North, owing to its effect on public opinion.

Virtual addressing allows applications to believe that there is much more physical memory than actually exists.

adjective
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(computing) In C++, a virtual member function of a class.
noun
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Nearly, almost. (A relatively recent corruption of meaning, attributed to misuse in advertising and media.)

The angry peasants were a virtual army as they attacked the castle.

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A condition without boundaries or constraints. The word virtual is used to define a feature or state that is simulated in some manner; for example, a "virtual world" is all computer-generated imagery.It Started with Virtual MemoryThe first virtual term was "virtual memory," in which the contents of RAM is saved to storage and swapped back and forth as needed. Virtual memory is common on every modern computer (see virtual memory).The Virtualized DatacenterA "virtual machine" is a computer within a computer. The driver of cloud computing technology, the virtual machine is an operating system that communicates with a control program and not the hardware directly. The hardware is being simulated or "virtualized" (see virtual machine). See cloud computing.Online,Electronic and InternetHaving such a high-tech ring, the word virtual evolved to mean "virtually" anything (see list below). Virtual is often used as a substitute for the words "online," "computerized," "electronic" or "Internet." It has also been used to mean "not physical," for example, "The company's product will be virtual for another year."MAJOR VIRTUAL TERMSvirtual memoryvirtual machinevirtual assistantvirtual machine monitordesktop virtualizationapplication virtualizationnetwork virtualizationOS virtualizationserver virtualizationstorage virtualizationvirtual applianceJava Virtual Machinevirtual private cloudVPN (virtual private network) OTHER VIRTUAL TERMSvirtual 8086 Modevirtual access pointvirtual autopsyvirtual circuitvirtual communityvirtual companionvirtual companyvirtual connectionvirtual copyvirtual currencyvirtual data roomvirtual database virtual datacenter (see datacenter container) virtual desktop servicesvirtual device virtual device driver (see VxD) Virtual Device Interface (see VDI) virtual directoryvirtual diskvirtual DOS machinevirtual drivevirtual environment Virtual Execution System (see VES) virtual foldervirtual functionvirtual funds virtual greeting card (see e-card) virtual hard drive (see RAM disk) virtual headphonesvirtual hostvirtual hypertextvirtual imagevirtual instrumentvirtual IP addressvirtual ISPvirtual keyboardvirtual kidnappingvirtual LANvirtual libraryVirtual Machine Managervirtual marketplacevirtual mentoringvirtual monitorVirtual network virtual network computing (see VNC) virtual newscasterVirtual PCVirtual PC for Macvirtual peripheralvirtual phone numbervirtual printervirtual printer portvirtual processorvirtual radio stationvirtual realityvirtual rootvirtual routingvirtual screenvirtual serial portvirtual servervirtual shoppingvirtual storagevirtual storevirtual supercomputer virtual surround sound (see 3D audio) virtual switchvirtual tapevirtual tape libraryvirtual tape systemvirtual terminalvirtual toolkitvirtual traffic lightsvirtual voicemailvirtual workgroupvirtual worldvirtualizationvirtualize AMD Virtualization (see AMD-V) VirtualWiFifull virtualizationhardware virtualizationI/O virtualizationparavirtualizationhardware virtual memory augmented virtuality (see augmented reality) computer automatic virtual environment (see CAVE) Global Virtual Private Network (see GVPN) Intel Virtualization Technology (see VT) K Virtual Machine (see KVM) Microsoft Virtual MachineMicrosoft Virtual Server permanent virtual circuit (see PVC) switched virtual circuit (see SVC)
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(computing, object-oriented programming, of a class member) In object-oriented programming, capable of being overridden with a different implementation in a subclass.
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Origin of virtual

  • Middle English virtuall effective from Medieval Latin virtuālis from Latin virtūs excellence virtue

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • From Latin virtuālis, from virtus (“virtue").

    From Wiktionary