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2 definitions found
 for platinum-iridium
From The Jargon File (version 4.4.7, 29 Dec 2003) :

  platinum-iridium
   adj.
  
      Standard, against which all others of the same category are measured.
      Usage: silly. The notion is that one of whatever it is has actually been
      cast in platinum-iridium alloy and placed in the vault beside the Standard
      Kilogram at the International Bureau of Weights and Measures near Paris.
      (From 1889 to 1960, the meter was defined to be the distance between two
      scratches in a platinum-iridium bar kept in that same vault ? this replaced
      an earlier definition as 10^-7 times the distance between the North Pole
      and the Equator along a meridian through Paris; unfortunately, this had
      been based on an inexact value of the circumference of the Earth. From 1960
      to 1984 it was defined to be 1650763.73 wavelengths of the orange-red line
      of krypton-86 propagating in a vacuum. It is now defined as the length of
      the path traveled by light in a vacuum in the time interval of 1/
      299,792,458 of a second. The kilogram is now the only unit of measure
      officially defined in terms of a unique artifact. But this will have to
      change; in 2003 it was revealed that the reference kilogram has been
      shedding mass over time, and is down by 50 micrograms.) ?This
      garbage-collection algorithm has been tested against the platinum-iridium
      cons cell in Paris.? Compare golden.
  

From The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing (30 December 2018) :

  platinum-iridium
  
      A standard, against which all others of the same
     category are measured.  Usage: silly.
  
     The notion is that one of whatever it is has actually been
     cast in platinum-iridium alloy and placed in the vault beside
     the Standard Kilogram at the International Bureau of Weights
     and Measures near Paris, as the bar defining the standard
     metre once was.
  
     "This garbage collection algorithm has been tested against
     the platinum-iridium cons cell in Paris."
  
     Compare golden.
  
     [{Jargon File]
  
     (1997-02-20)
  

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