General English


  • Property of the Earth’s atmosphere whereby radiation of particular wavelengths is able to reach the Earth’s surface. There are windows for some radio, infrared and other wavelengths as well as for visible light.


  • noun a short period when something is available or possible


  • noun a reserved section of screen used to display special information, which can be selected and looked at at any time and which overwrites information already on the screen
  • noun a part of a document currently displayed on a screen
  • noun an area of memory or access to a storage device
  • verb to set up a section of screen by defining the coordinates of its corners, allowing information to be temporarily displayed and overwriting previous information without altering information in the workspace


  • A normally glazed opening in an external wall to admit light and, in buildings without central air-conditioning, air.
  • An assembly consisting of a window frame, glazing, and necessary appurtenances.
  • A small opening in a wall, partition, or enclosure for transactions, such as a ticket window or information window.


  • A time interval during which an activity may take place. Also, a time interval during which an activity must take place.
  • An interval of radio frequencies which pass through or are propagated via the atmosphere. For example, a radio window. Also, an interval of frequencies which is transmitted through a given object or medium.
  • A transparent section of a material, such as glass or plastic, through which the inner portion of a device or apparatus can be viewed. For example, such a window on certain radiation detectors.
  • An area on a computer screen with defined boundaries, and within which information is displayed. Windows can be resized, maximized, minimized, placed side-by-side, overlaid, and so on. Each window can be that of a separate program, while a single program may have any number of windows open at a given moment. When two or more windows are open, only one is active, and the rest are inactive. Also called application window.
  • A hole or opening between two cavities or waveguides, the bars of a transformer, or the like.
  • A partial view of something, such as that of a dial or of a file. The viewed section can be varied, so as to see different portions at different moments.
  • A material, such as foil, intended to interfere with radar operation.

Information & Library Science

  • noun a reserved section of a computer screen, with specific information, which can overwrite other sections on screen and can be selected at any time for editing or reference
  • noun an opening in an envelope to show the address printed on the enclosed document


  • noun a small opening in the ear


  • noun an opening in a wall or door or the side of a vehicle, filled with glass

Origin & History of “window”

A window is etymologically a ‘wind-eye’ – that is, an ‘eye’-like opening for admitting the air. The word was borrowed from Old Norse vindauga, a compound noun formed from vindr ‘wind’ and auga ‘eye’. Danish vindue is descended from the Old Norse form, which was also taken over by Irish as fuinneog.