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 ?
There was further fallout with Michael Tebbutt, who had been administrator of the estate between 1972 and 1982, saying: "Anyone who knows the landscaped park at Weston will realise that to hold a pop concert in it is a misjudgment of the first magnitude and totally alien to the immediate environment.
Hay, said: "The worthy and ambitious policy of the Aberdeen Picture Palaces Ltd, to build in Aberdeen the finest Super Cinema Theatre in Scotland, becomes an accomplished achievement of the first magnitude with the opening today of the 'Capitol' Super Cinema Theatre in Union Street West.
That would be a tragedy of the first magnitude. Hence, the Gentiles hired to operate Israel's government must first sign a solemn contract stipulating they will not convert to Judaism.
It was indeed a splendid setting and the gastronomy spread out, especially the seafood, was of the first magnitude.
Well, even before I met Madonna, I enjoyed her upfront attitude, support for women and gays, and that undeniable belief of hers that she was destined for greatness, a star of the first magnitude even before most people had heard of her.
Summary: After the international conference "Invest in Tunisia, Start-up Democracy," an event of the first magnitude dominated the country's economic scene on September 9.
Its political importance was great, because it underlined the statehood of Cyprus and was seen as a gesture of the first magnitude for the promotion of closer relations of friendship and co-operation between the two peoples.
Weatherall is a storyteller of the first magnitude." Even though there is no insight on why markets behave the way they do, Musgrave enthusiastically recommends this book for what it does accomplish.
A New American star of the first magnitude is born on North Palm Avenue, where Louies Modern shines brightly on every point of hospitality worth noting: food, drink, service and setting.