cycle

[sahy-kuhl]
noun
1.
any complete round or series of occurrences that repeats or is repeated.
2.
a round of years or a recurring period of time, especially one in which certain events or phenomena repeat themselves in the same order and at the same intervals.
3.
any long period of years; age.
4.
a bicycle, motorcycle, tricycle, etc.
5.
a group of poems, dramas, prose narratives, songs etc., about a central theme, figure, or the like: the Arthurian cycle.
6.
Physics.
a.
a sequence of changing states that, upon completion, produces a final state identical to the original one.
b.
one of a succession of periodically recurring events.
c.
a complete alteration in which a phenomenon attains a maximum and minimum value, returning to a final value equal to the original one.
7.
Mathematics. a permutation of a set of elements that leaves the original cyclic order of the elements unchanged.
8.
Computers.
a.
the smallest interval of time required to complete an operation in a computer.
b.
a series of computer operations repeated as a unit.
verb (used without object), cycled, cycling.
9.
to ride or travel by bicycle, motorcycle, tricycle, etc.
10.
to move or revolve in cycles; pass through cycles.
Idioms
11.
hit for the cycle, Baseball. (of one player) to hit a single, double, triple, and home run in one game.

Origin:
1350–1400; Middle English cicle < Late Latin cyclus < Greek kýklos cycle, circle, wheel, ring, disk, orb; see wheel

supercycle, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
cycle (ˈsaɪkəl)
 
n
1.  a recurring period of time in which certain events or phenomena occur and reach completion or repeat themselves in a regular sequence
2.  a completed series of events that follows or is followed by another series of similar events occurring in the same sequence
3.  the time taken or needed for one such series
4.  a vast period of time; age; aeon
5.  a group of poems or prose narratives forming a continuous story about a central figure or event: the Arthurian cycle
6.  a series of miracle plays: the Chester cycle
7.  See song cycle a group or sequence of songs
8.  bicycle tricycle short for motorcycle
9.  astronomy the orbit of a celestial body
10.  a recurrent series of events or processes in plants and animals: a life cycle; a growth cycle; a metabolic cycle
11.  physics a continuous change or a sequence of changes in the state of a system that leads to the restoration of the system to its original state after a finite period of time
12.  one of a series of repeated changes in the magnitude of a periodically varying quantity, such as current or voltage
13.  computing
 a.  a set of operations that can be both treated and repeated as a unit
 b.  the time required to complete a set of operations
 c.  one oscillation of the regular voltage waveform used to synchronize processes in a digital computer
14.  (in generative grammar) the set of cyclic rules
 
vb
15.  (tr) to process through a cycle or system
16.  (intr) to move in or pass through cycles
17.  to travel by or ride a bicycle or tricycle
 
[C14: from Late Latin cyclus, from Greek kuklos cycle, circle, ring, wheel; see wheel]
 
'cycling
 
n, —adj

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

cycle
late 14c., from L.L. cyclus, from Gk. kyklos "circle, wheel," from PIE *kwel-, *kwol- "to roll, to move around, wheel" (cf. Skt. cakram "circle, wheel," carati "he moves, wanders;" Avestan caraiti "applies himself," c'axra "chariot, wagon;" Gk. polos "a round axis" (PIE *kw- becomes Gk. p- before some
vowels), polein "move around;" L. colere "to frequent, dwell in, to cultivate, move around," cultus "tended, cultivated," hence also "polished," colonus "husbandman, tenant farmer, settler, colonist;" Lith. kelias "a road, a way;" O.N. hvel, O.E. hweol "wheel;" O.Rus., Pol. kolo, Rus. koleso "a wheel"). The verb meaning "to ride a bicycle" is from 1883.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

cycle cy·cle (sī'kəl)
n.

  1. An interval of time during which a characteristic, often regularly repeated event or sequence of events occurs.

  2. A single complete execution of a periodically repeated phenomenon.

  3. A periodically repeated sequence of events.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
cycle   (sī'kəl)  Pronunciation Key 
  1. A single complete execution of a periodically repeated phenomenon. See also period.

  2. A circular or whorled arrangement of flower parts such as those of petals or stamens.


The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Slang Dictionary

cycle


1. n. The basic unit of computation. What every hacker wants more of (noted hacker Bill Gosper described himself as a "cycle junkie"). One can describe an instruction as taking so many `clock cycles'. Often the computer can access its memory once on every clock cycle, and so one speaks also of `memory cycles'. These are technical meanings of cycle. The jargon meaning comes from the observation that there are only so many cycles per second, and when you are sharing a computer the cycles get divided up among the users. The more cycles the computer spends working on your program rather than someone else's, the faster your program will run. That's why every hacker wants more cycles: so he can spend less time waiting for the computer to respond.
2. By extension, a notional unit of _human_ thought power, emphasizing that lots of things compete for the typical hacker's think time. "I refused to get involved with the Rubik's Cube back when it was big. Knew I'd burn too many cycles on it if I let myself."
3. vt. Syn. {bounce} (sense 4), 120 reset; from the phrase `cycle power'. "Cycle the machine again, that serial port's still hung."
FOLDOC
Computing Dictionary

cycle definition

unit
A basic unit of computation, one period of a computer clock.
Each instruction takes a number of clock cycles. Often the computer can access its memory once on every clock cycle, and so one speaks also of "memory cycles".
Every hacker wants more cycles (noted hacker Bill Gosper describes himself as a "cycle junkie"). There are only so many cycles per second, and when you are sharing a computer the cycles get divided up among the users. The more cycles the computer spends working on your program rather than someone else's, the faster your program will run. That's why every hacker wants more cycles: so he can spend less time waiting for the computer to respond.
The use of the term "cycle" for a computer clock period can probably be traced back to the rotation of a generator generating alternating current though computers generally use a clock signal which is more like a square wave. Interestingly, the earliest mechanical calculators, e.g. Babbage's Difference Engine, really did have parts which rotated in true cycles.
[Jargon File]
(1997-09-30)
The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010 http://foldoc.org
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Example sentences for cycle
It coincides with the fruit harvest, and marks the end of the agricultural cycle.
This cross breeding has the added effect of confusing the breeding cycle.
This exposes the animal to danger and also disrupts the breeding cycle.
The structure of chromosomes and chromatin varies through the cell cycle.
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