|1.||stretched or stressed tightly; taut or rigid|
|2.||under mental or emotional strain|
|3.||producing mental or emotional strain: a tense day|
|4.||Compare lax (of a speech sound) pronounced with considerable muscular effort and having relatively precise accuracy of articulation and considerable duration: in English the vowel |
|[C17: from Latin tensus taut, from tendere to stretch]|
An inflectional (see inflection) form of verbs; it expresses the time at which the action described by the verb takes place. The major tenses are past, present, and future. The verb in “I sing” is in the present tense; in “I sang,” past tense; in “I will sing,” future tense. Other tenses are the present perfect (“I have sung”), the past perfect (“I had sung”), and the future perfect (“I will have sung”).
tenseadj. Of programs, very clever and efficient. A tense piece of code often got that way because it was highly bummed, but sometimes it was just based on a great idea. A comment in a clever routine by Mike Kazar, once a grad-student hacker at CMU: "This routine is so tense it will bring tears to your eyes." A tense programmer is one who produces tense code.