proceeding, made, or occurring without definite aim, reason, or pattern:
the random selection of numbers.
Statistics. of or characterizing a process of selection in which each item of a set has an equal probability of being chosen.
(of building materials) lacking uniformity of dimensions:
(of ashlar) laid without continuous courses.
constructed or applied without regularity:
unknown, unidentified, or out of place:
A couple of random guys showed up at the party.
odd and unpredictable in an amusing way:
my totally random life.
Chiefly British, 3 (def 7b).
Building Trades. without uniformity:
at random, without definite aim, purpose, method, or adherence to a prior arrangement; in a haphazard way:
Contestants were chosen at random from the studio audience.
lacking any definite plan or prearranged order; haphazard: a random selection
having a value which cannot be determined but only described probabilistically: a random variable
chosen without regard to any characteristics of the individual members of the population so that each has an equal chance of being selected: random sampling
(informal) (of a person) unknown: some random guy waiting for a bus
at random, in a purposeless fashion; not following any prearranged order
“having no definite aim or purpose,” 1650s, from at random (1560s), “at great speed” (thus, “carelessly, haphazardly”), alteration of Middle English noun randon “impetuosity, speed” (c.1300), from Old French randon “rush, disorder, force, impetuosity,” from randir “to run fast,” from Frankish *rant “a running” or some other Germanic source, from Proto-Germanic *randa (cf. Old High German rennen “to run,” Old English rinnan “to flow, to run;” see run (v.)).
In 1980s U.S. college student slang it began to acquire a sense of “inferior, undesirable.” (A 1980 William Safire column describes it as a college slang noun meaning “person who does not belong on our dormitory floor.”) Random access in reference to computer memory is recorded from 1953. Related: Randomly; randomness.
Relating to a type of circumstance or event that is described by a probability distribution.
Relating to an event in which all outcomes are equally likely, as in the testing of a blood sample for the presence of a substance.
Without order or fixed purpose, haphazardly, as in Jackson Pollock dropped paints on canvas seemingly at random. Originally this phrase meant “very speedily” and “heedlessly.” Shakespeare had the present usage in 1 Henry VI (5:3): “He talks at random; sure the man is mad.” [ Late 1500s ]
see: at random
completely prepared or in fit condition for immediate action or use: troops ready for battle; Dinner is ready. duly equipped, completed, adjusted, or arranged, as for an occasion or purpose: The mechanic called to say that the car is ready. willing: ready to forgive. prompt or quick in perceiving, comprehending, speaking, writing, etc. proceeding from […]
- At rest
the refreshing quiet or repose of sleep: a good night’s rest. refreshing ease or inactivity after exertion or labor: to allow an hour for rest. relief or freedom, especially from anything that wearies, troubles, or disturbs. a period or interval of inactivity, repose, solitude, or tranquillity: to go away for a rest. mental or spiritual […]
- At risk
exposure to the chance of injury or loss; a hazard or dangerous chance: It’s not worth the risk. Insurance. the hazard or chance of loss. the degree of probability of such loss. the amount that the insurance company may lose. a person or thing with reference to the hazard involved in insuring him, her, or […]
- At same time
the system of those sequential relations that any event has to any other, as past, present, or future; indefinite and continuous duration regarded as that in which events succeed one another. duration regarded as belonging to the present life as distinct from the life to come or from eternity; finite duration. (sometimes initial capital letter) […]