See also: atòmic



atom +‎ -ic



atomic (not comparable)

  1. (physics, chemistry) Of or relating to atoms; composed of atoms; monatomic.
    Antonym: molecular
    A stream of atomic hydrogen is emitted.
  2. Employing or relating to nuclear energy or processes.
    We built a small atomic bomb in the garage.
    • 1955, David J. Dallin, Soviet Espionage (page 495)
      Before the atomic spy Allan Nunn May left Canada to go to London, a treff in London had to be arranged for him and another agent.
  3. Infinitesimally small.
    The hairs on a bedbug are almost atomic.
  4. Unable to be split or made any smaller.
    A bit is an atomic item of data.
  5. (computing) Of an operation: guaranteed to complete either fully or not at all while waiting in a pause, and running synchronously when called by multiple asynchronous threads.
    In order to avoid race conditions, this operation has to be atomic.
    Whenever possible, use atomic types instead of mutexes.
    • 2006, Tim Peierls, Brian Goetz, Joshua Bloch, Joseph Bowbeer, Doug Lea, David Holmes, Java Concurrency in Practice, Pearson Education (→ISBN), page 325:
      It also provides an atomic compareAndSet method (which if successful has the memory effects of both reading and writing a volatile variable) and, for convenience, atomic add, increment, and decrement methods.
  6. (programming, of a commit in a VCS) Containing a single change, as opposed to involving numerous unrelated changes.
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Derived termsEdit


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atomic (plural atomics)

  1. (computing) An atomic operation.





atomic m (feminine singular atomica, masculine plural atomics, feminine plural atomicas)

  1. atomic

Related termsEdit