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1. A minor malfunction, mishap, or technical problem; a snag: a computer glitch; a navigational glitch; a glitch in the negotiations.
2. A false or spurious electronic signal caused by a brief, unwanted surge of electric power.
3. Astronomy A sudden change in the period of rotation of a neutron star.

[Probably from Yiddish glitsh, a slip, lapse, from glitshn, to slip, from Middle High German glitschen, alteration of glīten, to glide, from Old High German glītan; see ghel- in Indo-European roots.]

glitch′y adj.
Word History: One of the two earliest known appearances of the word glitch is found in John Glenn's contribution to the book Into Orbit (1962), an account of Project Mercury (the United States' first human spaceflight program) by the seven astronauts who participated: "Another term we adopted to describe some of our problems was 'glitch.'" Glenn then gives the technical sense of the word the astronauts had adopted: "Literally, a glitch is a spike or change in voltage in an electrical current." The word may have already been in use by engineers and other specialists for some time, though. Later in the book, it is explained again and is simply said to be a slang word for a "hitch." Since the appearance of the term in the context of electronics, glitch has passed beyond technical use and now covers a wide variety of malfunctions and mishaps.
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.


adj, glitchier or glitchiest
(of an electronic system) prone to sudden instances of malfunctioning or irregularity
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
References in periodicals archive ?
From around 2.30pm today, both of the social networking services were glitchy as users were having trouble posting and logging in.
In recent years, NBA 2K has had a couple of complaints from different users for glitchy and buggy gameplay.
Recognised by Windows 10 as a second display, the ScreenPad Plus seemed a bit glitchy during operation.
Wagner's songs come alive in glitchy and pliant levels of beauty as on The Air Is Heavy And I Should Be Listening To You.
You can almost hear Overnight as a folk song, but the pounding beat and glitchy samples and choral snippets turn it into something all her own.
Beneath the bright colors and all the other visual bells and whistles, the core remains, the relationship between simple, good-hearted Ralph and glitchy, precocious, easy-going Vanellope.
If you are a fan of some glitchy electronics combined with the energy of punk rock then I think that you'll enjoy the peculiar noises that we make.
Combining glitchy pop sounds and delicate harmonising vocals sang by her sisters, Elan and Miriam - their live performance is bound to get you dancing.
One of the party of bright and attractive twenty-somethings has bought a glitchy second-hand laptop to join his friends on their internet games night.
Awarding a gold star to a glitchy and obfuscated process is highly problematic as it opens up the balloting procedure to inequity, tampering and political contriving.