component

It's the Ikea curse: You spend four hours figuring out how to piece together your new furniture, only to be left with one random component, or part, that doesn't seem to fit anywhere.

It's not surprising that component is related to a Latin word that means "to put together." You simply can't put something together without all of the correct components. Technically speaking, a component is an element of a system or a part of a machine. But a component can also be a factor or ingredient, such as the components of a decision or the components of a really good chocolate cake.

DEFINITIONS OF: component

1

n an artifact that is one of the individual parts of which a composite entity is made up; especially a part that can be separated from or attached to a system

“spare components for cars”
“a component or constituent element of a system”
Synonyms:
constituent, element
Types:
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accessory, add-on, appurtenance, supplement
a supplementary component that improves capability
add-on, addition, improver
a component that is added to something to improve it
audio
the sound elements of television
auto part, car part
a component of an automobile
crystal
a crystalline element used as a component in various electronic devices
computer hardware, hardware
(computer science) the mechanical, magnetic, electronic, and electrical components making up a computer system
heating element
the component of a heater or range that transforms fuel or electricity into heat
ingredient
a component of a mixture or compound
input
a component of production; something that goes into the production of output
landside
component consisting of a side piece opposite the moldboard
making
(usually plural) the components needed for making or doing something
module
a self-contained component (unit or item) that is used in combination with other components
pel, picture element, pixel
(computer science) the smallest discrete component of an image or picture on a CRT screen (usually a colored dot)
retrofit
a component or accessory added to something after it has been manufactured
spare, spare part
an extra component of a machine or other apparatus
spark gap
a component of an ignition system; consists of two shaped electrodes and the space between them
additive
something added to enhance food or gasoline or paint or medicine
admixture, intermixture
an additional ingredient that is added by mixing with the base
afterthought
an addition that was not included in the original plan
annex, annexe, extension, wing
an addition that extends a main building
attachment
a supplementary part or accessory
auto accessory
an accessory for an automobile
bar
a heating element in an electric fire
base
the principal ingredient of a mixture
burner
the heating elements of a stove or range on which pots and pans are placed for cooking
cartridge
a module designed to be inserted into a larger piece of equipment
C.P.U., CPU, central processing unit, central processor, mainframe, processor
(computer science) the part of a computer (a microprocessor chip) that does most of the data processing
computer accessory
an accessory for a computer
elongation, extension
an addition to the length of something
fitting
a small and often standardized accessory to a larger system
fixings, trimmings
the accessories that normally accompany (something or some activity)
immersion heater
a heating element that is immersed in the liquid that is to be heated (as in a hot-water tank)
computer memory, computer storage, memory, memory board, storage, store
an electronic memory device
piezoelectric crystal
a crystal that can be used as a transducer
power module
module that provides power to operate other modules
scheduler
computer hardware that arranges jobs to be done by the computer in an appropriate order
sequencer
computer hardware that sorts data or programs into a predetermined sequence
upgrade
hardware that provides better performance than an earlier version did
Type of:
part, portion
something less than the whole of a human artifact

n an abstract part of something

“jealousy was a component of his character”
Synonyms:
constituent, element, factor, ingredient
Types:
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be all and end all, be-all and end-all
the essential factor; the all-important element; the supreme aim
plot element
a component or element of the plot of a story
point
a geometric element that has position but no extension
MacGuffin, McGuffin
(film) a plot element that catches the viewers' attention or drives the plot
attracter, attractor
(physics) a point in the ideal multidimensional phase space that is used to describe a system toward which the system tends to evolve regardless of the starting conditions of the system
intersection, intersection point, point of intersection
a point where lines intersect
intercept
the point at which a line intersects a coordinate axis
Type of:
division, part, section
one of the portions into which something is regarded as divided and which together constitute a whole

n something determined in relation to something that includes it

“the smaller component is hard to reach”
Synonyms:
component part, constituent, part, portion
Types:
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substance
the real physical matter of which a person or thing consists
language unit, linguistic unit
one of the natural units into which linguistic messages can be analyzed
item, point
a distinct part that can be specified separately in a group of things that could be enumerated on a list
butt
the part of a plant from which the roots spring or the part of a stalk or trunk nearest the roots
base, basis
the most important or necessary part of something
detail, item, particular
a small part that can be considered separately from the whole
unit
an individual or group or structure or other entity regarded as a structural or functional constituent of a whole
member
anything that belongs to a set or class
balance, remainder, residual, residue, residuum, rest
something left after other parts have been taken away
subpart
a part of a part
body substance
the substance of the body
living substance, protoplasm
the substance of a living cell (including cytoplasm and nucleus)
discourse
extended verbal expression in speech or writing
word
a unit of language that native speakers can identify
syllable
a unit of spoken language larger than a phoneme
lexeme
a minimal unit (as a word or stem) in the lexicon of a language; `go' and `went' and `gone' and `going' are all members of the English lexeme `go'
morpheme
minimal meaningful language unit; it cannot be divided into smaller meaningful units
formative
minimal language unit that has a syntactic (or morphological) function
name
a language unit by which a person or thing is known
agenda item
one of the items to be considered
incidental
an item that is incidental
inventory item
an item listed in an inventory
line item
an item in an appropriation bill
news item
an item in a newspaper
place, position
an item on a list or in a sequence
collocation
a grouping of words in a sentence
phone, sound, speech sound
(phonetics) an individual sound unit of speech without concern as to whether or not it is a phoneme of some language
sign
a fundamental linguistic unit linking a signifier to that which is signified
high spot, highlight
the most interesting or memorable part
leftover, remnant
a small part or portion that remains after the main part no longer exists
chemistry
the chemical composition and properties of a substance or object
material, stuff
the tangible substance that goes into the makeup of a physical object
phlogiston
a hypothetical substance once believed to be present in all combustible materials and to be released during burning
mixture
(chemistry) a substance consisting of two or more substances mixed together (not in fixed proportions and not with chemical bonding)
atom
(physics and chemistry) the smallest component of an element having the chemical properties of the element
chemical element, element
any of the more than 100 known substances (of which 92 occur naturally) that cannot be separated into simpler substances and that singly or in combination constitute all matter
activator
(biology) any agency bringing about activation; a molecule that increases the activity of an enzyme or a protein that increases the production of a gene product in DNA transcription
substrate
the substance that is acted upon by an enzyme or ferment
element
one of four substances thought in ancient and medieval cosmology to constitute the physical universe
medium
an intervening substance through which something is achieved
medium
(biology) a substance in which specimens are preserved or displayed
fluid
a substance that is fluid at room temperature and pressure
volatile
a volatile substance; a substance that changes readily from solid or liquid to a vapor
essence
any substance possessing to a high degree the predominant properties of a plant or drug or other natural product from which it is extracted
Type of:
relation
an abstraction belonging to or characteristic of two entities or parts together
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