buffer

A buffer is an object that either softens a blow like a fender, or helps buff or shine stuff, like a nail buffer.

Buffer comes from the Old French buff, a word that imitates the sound of a blow to a soft body. A person can also be a buffer if she keeps people prone to fighting from coming in contact or hurting each other, like a teacher who separates two rowdy kids at the lunch table. A buffer state is a country between two conflicting ones that helps them better get along by creating a buffer between them — like Mongolia is for China and Russia.

Primary Meanings of buffer

1.
vn
protect from impact
a cushion-like device that reduces shock due to an impact
2.
n
an implement consisting of soft material mounted on a block; used for polishing (as in manicuring)
3.
nv
(chemistry) an ionic compound that resists changes in its pH
add a buffer (a solution)
4.
n
(computer science) a part of RAM used for temporary storage of data that is waiting to be sent to a device; used to compensate for differences in the rate of flow of data between components of a computer system
Full Definitions of buffer
1

v protect from impact

Synonyms:
cushion, soften
Type of:
modify
make less severe or harsh or extreme

n a cushion-like device that reduces shock due to an impact

Synonyms:
fender
Type of:
device
an instrumentality invented for a particular purpose

n an inclined metal frame at the front of a locomotive to clear the track

Synonyms:
cowcatcher, fender, pilot
Type of:
framework
a structure supporting or containing something

n a neutral zone between two rival powers that is created in order to diminish the danger of conflict

Synonyms:
buffer zone
Type of:
zone
an area or region distinguished from adjacent parts by a distinctive feature or characteristic
2

n an implement consisting of soft material mounted on a block; used for polishing (as in manicuring)

Synonyms:
buff
Type of:
implement
instrumentation (a piece of equipment or tool) used to effect an end

n a power tool used to buff surfaces

Synonyms:
polisher
Type of:
power tool
a tool driven by a motor
3

n (chemistry) an ionic compound that resists changes in its pH

Type of:
chemical compound, compound
(chemistry) a substance formed by chemical union of two or more elements or ingredients in definite proportion by weight

v add a buffer (a solution)

buffered saline solution for the eyes”
Type of:
modify
make less severe or harsh or extreme
4

n (computer science) a part of RAM used for temporary storage of data that is waiting to be sent to a device; used to compensate for differences in the rate of flow of data between components of a computer system

Synonyms:
buffer storage, buffer store
Types:
show 5 types...
hide 5 types...
cache, memory cache
(computer science) RAM memory that is set aside as a specialized buffer storage that is continually updated; used to optimize data transfers between system elements with different characteristics
frame buffer
(computer science) a buffer that stores the contents of an image pixel by pixel
keyboard buffer
a buffer that keeps track of key strokes until the computer is ready to respond to them
print buffer
a buffer that stores data until the printer is ready
disk cache
a cache that stores copies of frequently used disk sectors in random access memory (RAM) so they can be read without accessing the slower disk
Type of:
memory device, storage device
a device that preserves information for retrieval

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