lock-in


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Related to lock-in: Lock-in amplifier, lock-in period

lock-in

[′läk ‚in]
(electronics)
Shifting and automatic holding of one or both of the frequencies of two oscillating systems which are coupled together, so that the two frequencies have the ratio of two integral numbers.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

lock-in

(standard)
When an existing standard becomes almost impossible to supersede because of the cost or logistical difficulties involved in convincing all its users to switch something different and, typically, incompatible.

The common implication is that the existing standard is notably inferior to other comparable standards developed before or since.

Things which have been accused of benefiting from lock-in in the absence of being truly worthwhile include: the QWERTY keyboard; any well-known operating system or programming language you don't like (e.g., see "Unix conspiracy"); every product ever made by Microsoft Corporation; and most currently deployed formats for transmitting or storing data of any kind (especially the Internet Protocol, 7-bit (or even 8-bit) character sets, analog video or audio broadcast formats and nearly any file format).

Because of network effects outside of just computer networks, Real World examples of lock-in include the current spelling conventions for writing English (or French, Japanese, Hebrew, Arabic, etc.); the design of American money; the imperial (feet, inches, ounces, etc.) system of measurement; and the various and anachronistic aspects of the internal organisation of any government (e.g., the American Electoral College).
This article is provided by FOLDOC - Free Online Dictionary of Computing (foldoc.org)
References in periodicals archive ?
Mills, who will also serve as co-chair in 2014, had this to say about the impact of the event: "I really love the lock-in because of how I see it bonding people like no other event we host at the library.
Through weaving webs of understanding with other actors on the local, state, and European level and taking actions including lock-ins, hunger strikes, demonstration, and assemblies, they demand that the Spanish government regularize, without conditions, the situation of all those who are kept in irregular residency situations by immigration policies.
FREE hot meals should be introduced universally for schoolchildren under 16 alongside lunchtime "lock-ins" to improve the region's health, a North-East MP has demanded.
Mortgage lock-ins are not generally priced to include imbedded optionality.
"Disagreements over lock-in rates are among the complaints most often heard by the state," said Squadrito.
A more desirable, and perhaps more feasible, alternative to extensive new legislation is to encourage greater efforts by lenders to ensure that adequate information is provided voluntarily to consumers about the costs of refinancings and the degree to which a lock-in can be relied on.
"The camera is too high to be accidentally knocked and I think that it was moved to hide the 'lock-in'," added PC Christopher Prudhoe.
On the wholesale side, where Directors usually sees borrowers lock-in for between 10 and 30 days, February registered the heavy fallout that resulted from the rate drops at the start of the year.
"So just as we used to have lock-ins for a late drink, I am now doing them for a late smoke."
It said that he and another hood, Steven McVey, 40, went to Victoria's, forced the owner to have lock-ins and used cocaine.
"That will mean there is a total of five different lock-ins to look at the legislation," Mr Clarke said.
Many lock-ins are caused by young children, when parents hand them the keys to keep them occupied while loading the car.