Macro



[mak-roh] /ˈmæk roʊ/

adjective
1.
very large in scale, scope, or capability.
2.
of or relating to .
noun, plural macros.
3.
anything very large in scale, scope, or capability.
4.
Photography. a .
5.
Also called macroinstruction. Computers. an instruction that represents a sequence of instructions in abbreviated form.
6.
.
1.
a combining form meaning “large,” “long,” “great,” “excessive,” used in the formation of compound words, contrasting with micro-: macrocosm; macrofossil; macrograph; macroscopic.
/ˈmækrəʊ/
noun (pl) macros
1.
a macro lens
2.
Also macro instruction. a single computer instruction that initiates a set of instructions to perform a specific task
combining form
1.
large, long, or great in size or duration: macroscopic
2.
(in pathology) indicating abnormal enlargement or overdevelopment: macrocyte Compare micro- (sense 5)
3.
producing larger than life images: macrophotography
n.

1959 in computing sense, shortened from macro-instruction.

word-forming element meaning “long, abnormally large, on a large scale,” taken into English via Middle French and Medieval Latin from Greek makros “long, large,” from PIE root *mak- “long, thin” (cf. Latin macer “lean, thin;” Old Norse magr, Old English mæger “lean, thin;” Greek mekos “length”).

macro- or macr-
pref.

macro-
A prefix meaning “large,” as in macromolecule, a large molecule.

1. Assembly language for VAX/VMS.
2. PL/I-like language with extensions for string processing. “MACRO: A Programming Language”, S.R. Greenwood, SIGPLAN Notices 14(9):80-91 (Sep 1979).
[Jargon File]

A name (possibly followed by a formal argument list) that is equated to a text or symbolic expression to which it is to be expanded (possibly with the substitution of actual arguments) by a macro expander.
The term “macro” originated in early assemblers, which encouraged the use of macros as a structuring and information-hiding device. During the early 1970s, macro assemblers became ubiquitous, and sometimes quite as powerful and expensive as HLLs, only to fall from favour as improving compiler technology marginalised assembly language programming (see languages of choice). Nowadays the term is most often used in connection with the C preprocessor, Lisp, or one of several special-purpose languages built around a macro-expansion facility (such as TeX or Unix’s troff suite).
Indeed, the meaning has drifted enough that the collective “macros” is now sometimes used for code in any special-purpose application control language (whether or not the language is actually translated by text expansion), and for macro-like entities such as the “keyboard macros” supported in some text editors (and PC TSRs or Macintosh INIT/CDEV keyboard enhancers).
(1994-12-06)
macroinstruction

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