- 1A person or thing that prevents incompatible or antagonistic people or things from coming into contact with or harming each other: family and friends can provide a buffer against stressMore example sentences
- I believe that historical forces push us into conflict and without the law as a buffer between people, we would have a world of vendetta, a world of violence, a world of chaos.
- Safety stock is used for the same reason as lead time - to provide a buffer of inventory to reduce the chance of a back order in the face of variability.
- It can be a shield too, surely, a buffer between the committing of an act and its execution.
- 2 (also buffer solution) Chemistry A solution that resists changes in pH when acid or alkali is added to it. Buffers typically involve a weak acid or alkali together with one of its salts.More example sentences
- A spectral change was observed upon addition of lipid vesicles to the buffer solution of the sensitizers.
- Chemical buffers can affect the uptake of macronutrients by reducing the pH gradient through the plasma membrane.
- When cyanobacterial cells are immersed in buffers of high osmotic strength, phycobilisome diffusion is strongly inhibited.
- 3 Computing A temporary memory area in which data is stored while it is being processed or transferred, especially one used while streaming video or downloading audio.More example sentences
- First we create a buffer that is one byte bigger than the user string and fill it with zeros.
- The data processing device may further include a write buffer for storing write data.
- You can paste the text in your copy buffer into the active window with Ctrl-A.
verb[with object] Back to top
- 1Lessen or moderate the impact of (something): the massage helped to buffer the strainMore example sentences
- Among family members, social support can help buffer the negative impacts of poverty and economic hardship.
- I love how the snow buffered the sound of the cars on the nearby streets.
- It was buffered by a rock wall erected by the Archaeological Survey of India in 1978 to secure the monument against erosion, but a lawn and some outlying structures were buried in silt.
- 2Treat with a chemical buffer: add organic matter to buffer the resulting alkalinityMore example sentences
- Weaver and associates compared pain on instillation of plain tetracaine hydrochloride ophthalmic solution with pain caused by a solution buffered with sodium bicarbonate to a pH level of 7.4.
- The pH of the medium was not buffered and the volume in each container was maintained by regularly adding fresh nutrient solution to compensate for plant consumption and evaporation.
- Each media type, including SIM, was buffered with 25 mM MES and cultured for 35 d.
- 3 Computing Store (data) in a buffer while it is being processed or transferred: try buffering as much of the video stream as you can before you hit the ‘play’ buttonMore example sentences
- Cunningly, the machine buffers everything, allowing you to capture a complete song or show, even if you don't press 'record' as soon as it starts.
- The radio plays in real time - it doesn't buffer or save the audio before you hear.
- But how, you might ask, were they able to buffer bits of data ahead of the current streaming rate?
mid 19th century: probably from obsolete buff (verb), imitative of the sound of a blow to a soft body.
Entry from British & World English dictionary
nounBritish • informal
mid 18th century: probably from obsolete buff (see buffer1), or from dialect buff 'stutter, splutter' (possibly the same word). In late Middle English buffer had the sense 'stammerer'.