FIRST

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first

1. preceding all others in numbering or counting order; the ordinal number of one. Often written: 1st
2. denoting the lowest forward ratio of a gearbox in a motor vehicle
3. Music
a. denoting the highest part assigned to one of the voice parts in a chorus or one of the sections of an orchestra
b. denoting the principal player in a specific orchestral section
4. Education chiefly Brit an honours degree of the highest class
5. the lowest forward ratio of a gearbox in a motor vehicle; low gear
6. Music
a. the highest part in a particular section of a chorus or orchestra
b. the instrument or voice taking such a part
c. the chief or leading player in a section of an orchestra; principal
7. Music a rare word for prime
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005

FIRST

Abbrev. for Far Infrared and Submillimeter Space Telescope. An orbiting telescope under design for ESA and at present scheduled for launch in 2007. It will be used primarily for interstellar spectroscopic studies. FIRST is at present considered to be a 4.5-meter radiatively cooled infrared (Cassegrain) telescope. It will feed two or three instruments working at wavelengths from about 100 μm to 1 mm and giving high spectral and angular resolution. A direct imaging Fabry–Perot interferometer (operating at 85–180 μm), a heterodyne detector (200–600 μm), and a multiband imaging bolometric system (70 μm up to maybe 1.2 mm) are under consideration; these will require active cooling. See also Horizon 2000.
Collins Dictionary of Astronomy © Market House Books Ltd, 2006

FIRST

(Forum of Incident Response and Security Teams) Founded in 1990, FIRST coordinates the efforts of dozens of CERTs, mostly governmental, from around the world. See CERT.
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References in periodicals archive ?
First-past-the-post (FPTP) encourages broad-based, consensus-building parties aiming to win almost anywhere.
This include the possibility of changing the current First-Past-the-Post (FPTP) system to the Proportionate Representation (PR) system, or a mixed of both.
Prime Minister Lee stressed that the current multi-party democratic system in Singapore, that is, the First-Past-The-Post voting system adopted from the Britishers, was not designed to have one dominant party in the country, The Online Citizen reported.
Responding to reporters' questions following midday prayers at the Hisarcyklyoy-lu mosque on Friday, the prime minister said that the ruling party was planning to introduce the first-past-the-post system in which only one deputy will be elected in each electoral constituency.
Shadow Welsh Secretary Peter Hain said: "Changing the electoral system to one where 30 AMs were elected in first-past-the-post constituencies and 30 from regional lists could lead to a situation where Plaid Cymru were the permanent kingmakers.
That was Peter Hain earlier this year when he was arguing against first-past-the-post for Westminster."
This is the same Peter Hain who, in the recent campaign for the Alternative Voting System for Westminster, suggested that there was "a natural progressive majority in Britain, which has been thwarted by first-past-the-post".
First-past-the-post systems are often criticised as being unrepresentative as they do not necessarily represent the choice of a majority of voters, only the highest polling candidate(s) is elected.
The referendum will decide whether Britain ditches first-past-the-post for the new system.
The Labour leader claimed it was also incorrect to suggest that switching from first-past-the-post to AV would lead to more coalitions or that it would involve expensive complex counting machines.
Campaigners for both the Alternative Vote and first-past-the-post do not help by making the choice about as interesting as which thumb to twiddle.
Launching the party's campaign for a Yes vote in the May 5 referendum, Mr Farron derided the defenders of first-past-the-post as "harrumphing majors" of the kind who fought against votes for women almost a century ago.