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 (dĭs-kŏn′tə-no͞o′ĭ-tē, -nyo͞o′-)
n. pl. dis·con·ti·nu·i·ties
1. Lack of continuity, logical sequence, or cohesion.
2. A break or gap.
3. Geology A surface at which seismic wave velocities change.
4. Mathematics
a. A point at which a function is defined but is not continuous.
b. A point at which a function is undefined.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


n, pl -ties
1. lack of rational connection or cohesion
2. a break or interruption
3. (Mathematics) maths
a. the property of being discontinuous
b. the point or the value of the variable at which a curve or function becomes discontinuous
4. (Geological Science) geology
a. a zone within the earth where a sudden change in physical properties, such as the velocity of earthquake waves, occurs. Such a zone marks the boundary between the different layers of the earth, as between the core and mantle. See also Mohorovičić discontinuity
b. a surface separating rocks that are not continuous with each other
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(ˌdɪs kɒn tnˈu ɪ ti, -ˈyu-)

n., pl. -ties.
1. lack of continuity; irregularity.
2. a break or gap.
3. a point at which a mathematical function is not continuous.
[1560–70; < Medieval Latin]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.



lose the thread To lose one’s train of thought in a discussion; to have the continuity of one’s thoughts or words interrupted. Thread in this phrase is the central thought connecting successive points, a continuous flow which is carried on in spite of digressions or interruptions. This figurative use of thread dates from the mid-17th century.

We laughed so violently … that he could not recover the thread of his harangue. (Frances Burney, Diary and Letters, 1782)

side-track To diverge from the main subject, course, or road; to go off on a tangent; to shelve or otherwise delay consideration of some matter. Literally, to side-track means to shunt a train onto a siding, off the main track, hence its figurative implications.

The business of the minister is to preach the gospel, not … to side-track on great moral issues. (Advance [Chicago, Illinois], June, 1893)

A related expression which also employs railroad terminology is off the track.

table In U.S. parliamentary procedure this verb means to ‘postpone action on’:

The amendment which was always present, which was rejected and tabled and postponed. (The Century XXXVII, 1873)

In British parliamentary procedure, it means to ‘present for discussion’:

If any more “Old Residents” wish to be heard, they must table their names. (Pall Mall Gazette, Jan. 3, 1887)

This is a confusing state of affairs and must be watched carefully by those encountering the term in what may be foreign contexts.

Picturesque Expressions: A Thematic Dictionary, 1st Edition. © 1980 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


A zone that marks a boundary between different layers of the Earth, such as between the mantle and the core, and where the velocity of seismic waves changes.
Dictionary of Unfamiliar Words by Diagram Group Copyright © 2008 by Diagram Visual Information Limited
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.discontinuity - lack of connection or continuity
separation - the state of lacking unity
continuity - uninterrupted connection or union
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.


noun lack of unity, disconnection, incoherence, disunion, lack of coherence, disjointedness, disconnectedness The text suffers from discontinuity.
Collins Thesaurus of the English Language – Complete and Unabridged 2nd Edition. 2002 © HarperCollins Publishers 1995, 2002


A cessation of continuity or regularity:
The American Heritage® Roget's Thesaurus. Copyright © 2013, 2014 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


[ˌdɪskɒntɪˈnjuːɪtɪ] N (= lack of continuity) → discontinuidad f; (= interruption) → interrupción f
Collins Spanish Dictionary - Complete and Unabridged 8th Edition 2005 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1971, 1988 © HarperCollins Publishers 1992, 1993, 1996, 1997, 2000, 2003, 2005


[ˌdɪsˌkɒntɪˈnjuːɪti] ndiscontinuité f
Collins English/French Electronic Resource. © HarperCollins Publishers 2005


nmangelnde Kontinuität, Diskontinuität f (geh); a certain amount of discontinuityein gewisser Mangel an Kontinuität; to reduce any discontinuity to a minimumdie Kontinuität möglichst wenig unterbrechen
Collins German Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged 7th Edition 2005. © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1980 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1997, 1999, 2004, 2005, 2007


[dɪsˌkɒntɪˈnjuːɪtɪ] (frm) n (quality) → discontinuità f inv; (gap) → interruzione f
Collins Italian Dictionary 1st Edition © HarperCollins Publishers 1995
References in periodicals archive ?
So, n + 1 dielectric waveguides give N cascaded abrupt discontinuities, labeled as: I, II, III, ..., N - 1, N.
If one assumes that the differential operations taking place in the Maxwell equations describing electromagnetic waves are all in the sense of distributions, says Idemen (mathematics, Yeditepe U., Turkey), then the discontinuities can be discussed pretty easily and rigorously.
Ethnic students will face the problem of "cultural discontinuities" when they learn school mathematics.
To remain competitive, they must deal with such "discontinuities" in a way that is cost-efficient but also compatible with their overall business strategies.
The purpose of this study was to highlight the visible discontinuities present in the laser welds of dental Ni-Cr alloys.
The hair restorative composition is allowed to chemically react with and repair and/or strengthen the damaged or chemically treated hair by adhering to and filling in discontinuities in hair shafts within the damaged or chemically treated hair to yield strengthened and/or repaired hair shafts.
This text is dedicated to the identification of discontinuities (e.g., associated with system displacement, system velocity, and material properties) in the stiffness properties of mechanical systems and how these discontinuities affect system behavior with regards to mechanical vibrations.
Crosstalk caused by return current discontinuities. When the return currents of multiple traces are forced away from their natural path to a plane-split edge, they induce noise currents into each other's signals.
I will take a month off from discussing thermal analysis and turn to a group of paint application problems that often are lumped together under the label of holidays, namely coating discontinuities, thin spots, voids, pinholes, and porosity.
In this case, the well-known Gibbs phenomenon reduces the order of accuracy to first order and produces spurious oscillations, particularly ill regions near the discontinuities. The frequently studied Gegenbauer reconstruction method has been shown to alleviate the effects of the Gibbs phenomenon while restoring the exponential accuracy of the spectral approximation.
Investment will be required as well as changes in lifestyle, and though some changes will generate growth in new sectors of the economy, there are bound to be discontinuities and genuine dilemmas for decision makers.