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Definition of "bootstrap" [bootstrap]

  • A loop of leather, cloth, or synthetic material that is sewn at the side or the top rear of a boot to help in pulling the boot on. (noun)
  • An instance of starting of a computer; a boot. (noun)
  • To promote and develop by use of one's own initiative and work without reliance on outside help: "We've bootstrapped our way back with aggressive tourism and recruiting high tech industries” ( John Corrigan). (verb-transitive)
  • Computer Science To boot (a computer). (verb-transitive)
  • Undertaken or accomplished with minimal outside help. (adjective)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "bootstrap" in a sentence
  • "In the late sixties, Jerry and a pair of protégés, Henry Kravis and George Roberts, began pursuing what they called bootstrap investments—what later became famously known as leveraged buyouts."
  • "Because of that connectedness, the only URI you need to give to your clients is one URI called the bootstrap URI.."
  • "My dad was a PDP-11 programmer in the old days, and he's got great stories about booting the machine up with a "bootstrap" -- a strip of punched cardboard that you whipped through the computer like the strip on a Hot Wheels car, so that it could find all the gunk it needed to start up properly."