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Definition: terminal

(1) An input/output (I/O) device for a computer that has a keyboard and mouse for input and a video screen for output. Older terminals did not have a mouse and used a printer for output. See dumb terminal and ATM machine.

(2) Any entrance or exit node for input or output; for example, a scanner or camera for input or a monitor or printer for output.

(3) A connector used to attach a wire. The wire is fastened by pressure, by a clip of some type or by tightening a screw. See bindings.

(4) (Terminal) A command line interface on a Unix-based computer. The following Mac example shows two commands; one that switches the current folder (directory) to the desktop and another that lists the files that begin with "X."

  Function                      Unix Command

  Change directory to desktop   cd desktop
  List files beginning with X   ls X*

The Terminal Window
The two commands required to list files that begin with "X" on the desktop are shown in this Mac example.