[syn: orthogonal, rectangular]
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Orthogonal \Or*thog"o*nal\, a. [Cf. F. orthogonal.]
Right-angled; rectangular; as, an orthogonal intersection of
one curve with another.
Orthogonal projection. See under Orthographic.
WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006):
adj 1: not pertinent to the matter under consideration; "an
issue extraneous to the debate"; "the price was
immaterial"; "mentioned several impertinent facts before
finally coming to the point" [syn: extraneous,
immaterial, impertinent, orthogonal]
2: statistically unrelated
3: having a set of mutually perpendicular axes; meeting at right
angles; "wind and sea may displace the ship's center of
gravity along three orthogonal axes"; "a rectangular
Cartesian coordinate system" [syn: orthogonal,
Moby Thesaurus II by Grady Ward, 1.0:
35 Moby Thesaurus words for "orthogonal":
cube-shaped, cubed, cubic, cubiform, cuboid, diced, foursquare,
normal, oblong, orthodiagonal, orthometric, perpendicular, plumb,
plunging, precipitous, quadrangular, quadrate, quadriform,
quadrilateral, rectangular, rhombic, rhomboid, right-angle,
right-angled, right-angular, sheer, square, steep, straight-up,
straight-up-and-down, tetragonal, tetrahedral, trapezohedral,
The Jargon File (version 4.4.7, 29 Dec 2003):
[from mathematics] Mutually independent; well separated; sometimes,
irrelevant to. Used in a generalization of its mathematical meaning to
describe sets of primitives or capabilities that, like a vector basis in
geometry, span the entire ?capability space? of the system and are in some
sense non-overlapping or mutually independent. For example, in
architectures such as the PDP-11 or VAX where all or nearly all
registers can be used interchangeably in any role with respect to any
instruction, the register set is said to be orthogonal. Or, in logic, the
set of operators not and or is orthogonal, but the set nand, or, and not is
not (because any one of these can be expressed in terms of the others).
Also used in comments on human discourse: ?This may be orthogonal to the
The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing (30 December 2018):
At 90 degrees (right angles).
N mutually orthogonal vectors span an N-dimensional
vector space, meaning that, any vector in the space can be
expressed as a linear combination of the vectors. This is
true of any set of N linearly independent vectors.
The term is used loosely to mean mutually independent or well
separated. It is used to describe sets of primitives or
capabilities that, like linearly independent vectors in
geometry, span the entire "capability space" and are in some
sense non-overlapping or mutually independent. For example,
in logic, the set of operators "not" and "or" is described as
orthogonal, but the set "nand", "or", and "not" is not
(because any one of these can be expressed in terms of the
Also used loosely to mean "irrelevant to", e.g. "This may be
orthogonal to the discussion, but ...", similar to "going off
at a tangent".
See also orthogonal instruction set.