/bak’w*d k*m-bat’*-bil’*-tee/ (Play on “backward compatibility”) A property of hardware or software revisions in which previous protocols, formats, layouts, etc. are irrevocably discarded in favour of “new and improved” protocols, formats and layouts, leaving the previous ones not merely deprecated but actively defeated. (Too often, the old and new versions cannot definitively be distinguished, such that lingering instances of the previous ones yield crashes or other infelicitous effects, as opposed to a simple “version mismatch” message.) A backward compatible change, on the other hand, allows old versions to coexist without crashes or error messages, but too many major changes incorporating elaborate backward compatibility processing can lead to extreme software bloat.
See also flag day.
- Backward compatibility
backward compatibility jargon Able to share data or commands with older versions of itself, or sometimes other older systems, particularly systems it intends to supplant. Sometimes backward compatibility is limited to being able to read old data but does not extend to being able to write data in a format that can be read by […]
toward the back or rear. with the back foremost. in the reverse of the usual or right way: counting backward from 100. toward the past: to look backward over one’s earlier mistakes. toward a less advanced state; retrogressively: Since the overthrow of the president the country has moved steadily backward. directed toward the back or […]
- Backward compatible
backward compatible backward compatibility
(on the London stock exchange) the fee paid by a seller of securities to the buyer for the privilege of deferring delivery of purchased securities. noun (commerce) the difference between the spot price for a commodity, including rent and interest, and the forward price (formerly, on the Stock Exchange) postponement of delivery by a seller […]