feature

(redirected from featureless)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus.

feature

TV, Radio a programme given special prominence on radio or television as indicated by attendant publicity
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005

feature

[′fē·chər]
(computer science)
In automatic pattern recognition, a property of an image that is useful for its interpretation.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

feature

(jargon)
1. A good property or behaviour (as of a program). Whether it was intended or not is immaterial.

2. An intended property or behaviour (as of a program). Whether it is good or not is immaterial (but if bad, it is also a misfeature).

3. A surprising property or behaviour; in particular, one that is purposely inconsistent because it works better that way - such an inconsistency is therefore a feature and not a bug. This kind of feature is sometimes called a miswart.

4. A property or behaviour that is gratuitous or unnecessary, though perhaps also impressive or cute. For example, one feature of Common LISP's "format" function is the ability to print numbers in two different Roman-numeral formats (see bells, whistles, and gongs).

5. A property or behaviour that was put in to help someone else but that happens to be in your way.

6. A bug that has been documented. To call something a feature sometimes means the author of the program did not consider the particular case, and that the program responded in a way that was unexpected but not strictly incorrect. A standard joke is that a bug can be turned into a feature simply by documenting it (then theoretically no one can complain about it because it's in the manual), or even by simply declaring it to be good. "That's not a bug, that's a feature!" is a common catch-phrase. Apparently there is a Volkswagen Beetle in San Francisco whose license plate reads "FEATURE".

See also feetch feetch, creeping featurism, wart, green lightning.

The relationship among bugs, features, misfeatures, warts and miswarts might be clarified by the following hypothetical exchange between two hackers on an airliner:

A: "This seat doesn't recline."

B: "That's not a bug, that's a feature. There is an emergency exit door built around the window behind you, and the route has to be kept clear."

A: "Oh. Then it's a misfeature; they should have increased the spacing between rows here."

B: "Yes. But if they'd increased spacing in only one section it would have been a wart - they would've had to make nonstandard-length ceiling panels to fit over the displaced seats."

A: "A miswart, actually. If they increased spacing throughout they'd lose several rows and a chunk out of the profit margin. So unequal spacing would actually be the Right Thing."

B: "Indeed."

"Undocumented feature" is a common euphemism for a bug.

7. An attribute or function of a class in Eiffel.
This article is provided by FOLDOC - Free Online Dictionary of Computing (foldoc.org)
References in periodicals archive ?
motel rooms in a thousand other small / featureless / american
Simulations from the 1970s suggested that, when two big disk-shaped galaxies merged, they'd create a big elliptical, a fairly featureless spheroid of stars.
Instead of images of, or allusions to, the Passion these stations present us with twelve exquisitely painted depictions of a single human skull, convincingly rendered in muted tones and set against a dark, featureless background.
One is an interesting, period building, an 'asset' to the area, and the other is a square, almost featureless construct of no merit.
Summary: A man dressed in nondescript grey clothing stands in a featureless beige room.
"Boris Johnson has done what Disraeli did in the 19th century, namely raise the level of interest in politics up several pegs" - Lord Hurd, former Tory foreign secretary, accusing many politicians of "churning out featureless phrases."
I am still rocking on" Cilla Black, pictured "Boris Johnson has done what Disraeli did in the 19th century, namely raise the level of interest in politics up several pegs" Lord Hurd, former Tory foreign secretary, accusing politicians of "churning out featureless phrases" "I have always had that mentality in everything I have done, even if it is just finishing a bowl of pasta before my friend" Tennis star Maria Sharapova
At one Liverpool book store I asked if they had any books about John Logie Baird, the blank looks from the assistants akin to a featureless wall.
The desert in the area is flat, rocky and featureless and, while roasting hot in the summer, during the winter months the temperature drops to 3C (37F) at night, with average highs of 18C (64F) during the day.
Blank faces, peering from bus windows, At featureless reflections, wondering who they are.
A view that first appeared open and featureless now holds an anxiety of detail; the voice that first sounded spare and simple now seems subtle, shrewd, and thrillingly intimate.