Why was clemency trending last week?


[bahy-uh-me-triks] /ˌbaɪ əˈmɛ trɪks/
noun, (used with a singular verb)
Biology, Statistics. biostatistics.
biometry (def 1).
the process by which a person's unique physical and other traits are detected and recorded by an electronic device or system as a means of confirming identity:
Scanning of the human iris is a reliable form of biometrics.
Origin of biometrics
1900-05; biometr(y) + -ics
Related forms
biometric, biometrical, adjective
biometrically, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for biometrics
  • He applied statistical methods to the study of evolution and heredity and called this science biometrics.
  • biometrics are sure to grow in importance for both governments and companies.
  • The use of biometrics to identify voters, being tested this year, should cut out impersonation too.
  • biometrics has promise but the technologies are neither standardized nor ubiquitous.
  • To be sure, the idea of using biometrics to provide marketing insight isn't new.
  • biometrics is the science of using one or more unique physical characteristics or behavioral traits to identify individuals.
  • Using biometrics for identifying human beings offers some unique advantages because only biometrics can identify you as you.
  • biometrics could make keys and combination locks obsolete.
  • All data, including biometrics is vulnerable whether in storage or in processing state.
British Dictionary definitions for biometrics


noun (functioning as sing)
  1. the analysis of biological data using mathematical and statistical methods
  2. the practice of digitally scanning the physiological or behavioural characteristics of individuals as a means of identification
the statistical calculation of the probable duration of human life
Derived Forms
biometrically, adverb
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for biometrics

"application of mathematics to biology," 1902, from biometric (also see -ics); slightly earlier in this sense was biometry (1901), which was coined by Whewell and used by him and others with a sense of "calculation of life expectancy" (1831).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
biometrics in Culture

biometrics definition

The measuring and analysis of such physical attributes as facial features and voice or retinal scans. This technology can be used to define an individual's unique identity, often for security purposes.

Note: Software is available that can match faces of individuals videotaped on the street to the picture of a suspected criminal or terrorist in a database. The use of biometrics is likely to increase in the future as security concerns become more of a priority for both governments and corporations following the September 11 attacks (2001).
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source
biometrics in Technology
security, hardware
The use of special input devices to analyse some physical parameter assumed to be unique to an individual, in order to confirm their identity as part of an authentication procedure.
Examples include fingerprint scanning, iris recognition, facial recognition, voice recognition (speaker recognition), signature, vascular pattern recognition.
The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for biometrics

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for biometrics

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for biometrics