signal

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Related to signals: signals intelligence

mixed signal

A signal, message, or communication that has, or is interpreted as having, multiple, ambiguous, or contradictory meanings. (Often plural.) I keep getting these mixed signals from my ex-girlfriend. I can't tell if she just wants to be friends, or if she's interested in getting back together. I just think it sends something of a mixed signal to be advertising a new production assistant position right after we went through a round of layoffs.
See also: mixed, signal

get (a) mixed signal(s)

To receive a signal, message, or communication that has, or seems to have, multiple, ambiguous, or contradictory meanings. I keep getting these mixed signals from my ex-girlfriend. I can't tell if she just wants to be friends, or if she's interested in getting back together. I've just been getting a mixed signal from my boss lately about what he thinks of my performance so far.
See also: get, mixed

send (a) mixed signal(s)

To communicate something that has, or seems to have, multiple, ambiguous, or contradictory meanings. My ex-girlfriend has accused me of sending mixed signals about our relationship, as if I'm hinting I want to get back together with her. I just think it sends something of a mixed signal to be advertising a new production assistant position right after we went through a round of layoffs.
See also: mixed, send

get (one's) signals crossed

To have a misunderstanding or miscommunication with someone else. I'm sorry I'm late, I thought we were getting here at 8—we must have gotten our signals crossed. My mom and I got our signals crossed, and now there's no one here to babysit the kids.
See also: crosse, get, signal

send a signal

To emphasize or make a clear statement of one's position. We need to send a signal to these hostile nations that we will not compromise our values for fear of reprisal. The latest memo clearly sends a signal to certain people in the company that their days are numbered. The quilts are intended to send a signal of hope to the survivors of this tragedy.
See also: send, signal

smoke signals

Indications that something is the case or is likely to happen. If the smoke signals are to be believed, a peace agreement could be signed by the end of the week. We're just awaiting smoke signals from the board of directors before we move on the expansion.
See also: signal, smoke

bell, book, and candle things that are miraculous or that signal that something

unusual or bizarre may soon happen. (Alluding originally to the items used when performing the rite of excommunication from the Roman Catholic Church.) Look, I can't work miracles! Do you expect me to show up at your house with bell, book, and candle, and make everything right? You have to take charge of your own destiny! On the top shelf of the tiny used-book store, Jim saw a bell, book, and candle sitting in a row, and he knew he was going to find some very interesting reading material.
See also: and, candle, signal, that, thing

signal for someone

to make a sign for someone to come. I signaled for the waiter and got the check. Ted signaled for the parking lot attendant.
See also: signal

signal for something

to make a sign that something should be done. I caught the waiter's eye and signaled for the check. The director signaled for applause.
See also: signal

signal (to) someone (to do something)

[for someone] to give someone a command or instruction using a signal. The traffic cop signaled me to stop. The state trooper signaled the driver to pull over to the side of the road.

smoke signals

Smoke signals are signs or suggestions that something might be happening or going to happen. The smoke signals coming out of the White House suggest that the President will sign the treaty. Recent economic smoke signals would indicate that the economy began to pick up in May. Note: Smoke signals are columns of smoke which were used to send messages over long distances, for example by Native American tribes.
See also: signal, smoke
References in periodicals archive ?
4 Vehicle signal groups; 4 tram signal groups; 2 turn signal groups; 2 special signals.
The dearth of left-turn signals has plagued the city for years, and has been a favorite gripe among Angelenos.
Propagation through building rubble is a new realm in the study of radio signals.
This mechanism reduces interrupt servicing latency as well as eliminates interrupt signal lines on the printed circuit board.
Two decoys can make the signal even harder to steal.
DF/Signal Integrity's integration architecture takes advantage of inter-signal timing information, including feedback on which adjacent signals are active during a current signal's sensitive time window, and subsequently, dramatically speeds up the analysis cycle.
The combined functions of crosspoint switching and Vitesse's unique PixEQ equalization make the VSC3304 a cost-effective, compact, low-power signal integrity tool that is useful wherever there are high-speed signals.
The PSTN network is engineered to accommodate the human voice, and the user's perception of the quality of a telephone conversation depends upon the real-time transmission of the voice signals.
The only safe way to make a left turn from a side street is to turn from a street that has a traffic signal.
But nothing was heard, and to this day no definite extraterrestrial signals have been recorded by the more than 70 radio searches undertaken.
De-emphasis is a commonly used technique for transmitting electrical signals at gigabit data rates to compensate for losses caused by PC board and backplane traces.
Since SAS/SATA receivers detect differential switching, an eye diagram is used to simultaneously view the difference between the + and - signals in a differential pair.
Researchers have demonstrated that the addition of an optimal level of such noise can sometimes make it easier to detect faint, information-carrying signals in electronic circuits and superconducting quantum interference devices (SN: 2/23/91, p.
Virtual Probing simulates signals from any point within the system using a single measured waveform.
Control information is transmitted either as short predefined bit sequences that are distinguishable from data, in packet format, or using out-of-band signaling (control signals sent using on/off signal pulses, similar to Morse code), and thus does not require separate transmission lines.