open

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open

1. Nautical free from navigational hazards, such as ice, sunken ships, etc.
2. Music
a. (of a violin or guitar string) not stopped with the finger
b. (of a pipe, such as an organ pipe) not closed at either end
c. (of a note) played on such a string or pipe
3. Commerce
a. in operation; active
b. unrestricted; unlimited
4. (of a wound) exposed to the air
5. (esp of the large intestine) free from obstruction
6. Chess (of a file) having no pawns on it
7. Maths (of a set) containing points whose neighbourhood consists of other points of the same set
8. Computing (of software or a computer system) designed to an internationally agreed standard in order to allow communication between computers, irrespective of size, maufacturer, etc.

open

[′ō·pən]
(electricity)
Condition in which conductors are separated so that current cannot pass.
Break or discontinuity in a circuit which can normally pass a current.

open

(1)
To prepare to read or write a file. This usually involves checking whether the file already exists and that the user has the necessary authorisation to read or write it. The result of a successful open is usually some kind of capability (e.g. a Unix file descriptor) - a token that the user passes back to the system in order to access the file without further checks and finally to close the file.

open

(2)
Abbreviation for "open (or left) parenthesis" - used when necessary to eliminate oral ambiguity. To read aloud the LISP form (DEFUN FOO (X) (PLUS X 1)) one might say: "Open defun foo, open eks close, open, plus eks one, close close."

open

(3)
Non-proprietary. An open standard is one which can be used without payment.

open

(1) To engage a file for reading and writing. Technically, an app is "run" and the data file is "opened." For example, after a word processing application is "loaded and run," a document is "opened" for editing or printing. Then, the document is "closed," and the app is "exited." Apps are also said to be "opened" and "closed."

In the case of a script or batch file, "open" can mean "open" for editing or "open and run." The difference is significant. Opening a batch file to edit its contents causes no action until the user makes changes, whereas opening and running a batch file causes instructions to be executed. Contrast with close.

(2) To "run" a program (application). "Open" is increasingly used to mean "load and run."

(3) With regard to a switch, open is "off." See switch.

(4) Made to operate or function compatibly with other products. See open architecture, open system and open source.