Why is the ninth month called September?
1650s, "a drawing of the outline of anything," from older Italian profilo "a drawing in outline," from profilare "to draw in outline," from pro- "forth" (see pro-) + filare "draw out, spin," from Late Latin filare "to spin, draw out a line," from filum "thread" (see file (v.)). Meaning "a side view" is from 1660s. Meaning "biographical sketch, character study" is from 1734.
profile pro·file (prō'fīl')
A side view of an object or a structure, especially of the human head.
A formal summary or analysis of data, often in the form of a graph or table, representing distinctive features or characteristics.
Simple language for matching and scoring data. "User's Manual for the PROFILE System", Cambridge Computer Assoc (May 1974).
1. A control file for a program, especially a text file automatically read from each user's home directory and intended to be easily modified by the user in order to customise the program's behaviour. Used to avoid hard-coded choices (see also dot file, rc file).
2. A report on the amounts of time spent in each routine of a program, used to find and tune away the hot spots in it. This sense is often verbed. Some profiling modes report units other than time (such as call counts) and/or report at granularities other than per-routine, but the idea is similar.