Browse Definitions :
Definition

idempotence

Idempotence, in programming and mathematics, is a property of some operations such that no matter how many times you execute them, you achieve the same result.

In programming, idempotence can be a property of many different code elements, including functions, methods, requests and statements. Idempotence is a language-agnostic property: It means the same thing in any programming context.

Here’s a simple demonstration of idempotence in HTTP requests:

HTTP GET requests are a method of retrieving specified data from a source, such as getting a bank account balance. GET requests are idempotent: Accessing the same data should always be consistent. On the other hand, POST requests are designed to change the target, such as adding a sum to a bank account. As such, a POST request should change the result and that means it’s not idempotent.

Benjamin Peirce, an American mathematician of the 19th century who taught at Harvard for over 50 years, coined the word idempotent to refer to algebraic elements that don’t change when raised to a positive integer power. The literal meaning of the word is “of the same power,” from the Latin idem, meaning same and Old French potence, meaning power.

This was last updated in May 2016

Continue Reading About idempotence

SearchNetworking
  • cloud-native network function (CNF)

    A cloud-native network function (CNF) is a service that performs network duties in software, as opposed to purpose-built hardware.

  • microsegmentation

    Microsegmentation is a security technique that splits a network into definable zones and uses policies to dictate how data and ...

  • Wi-Fi 6E

    Wi-Fi 6E is one variant of the 802.11ax standard.

SearchSecurity
  • MICR (magnetic ink character recognition)

    MICR (magnetic ink character recognition) is a technology invented in the 1950s that's used to verify the legitimacy or ...

  • What is cybersecurity?

    Cybersecurity is the protection of internet-connected systems such as hardware, software and data from cyberthreats.

  • Android System WebView

    Android System WebView is a system component for the Android operating system (OS) that allows Android apps to display web ...

SearchCIO
  • privacy compliance

    Privacy compliance is a company's accordance with established personal information protection guidelines, specifications or ...

  • contingent workforce

    A contingent workforce is a labor pool whose members are hired by an organization on an on-demand basis.

  • product development (new product development -- NPD)

    Product development, also called new product management, is a series of steps that includes the conceptualization, design, ...

SearchHRSoftware
  • talent acquisition

    Talent acquisition is the strategic process employers use to analyze their long-term talent needs in the context of business ...

  • employee retention

    Employee retention is the organizational goal of keeping productive and talented workers and reducing turnover by fostering a ...

  • hybrid work model

    A hybrid work model is a workforce structure that includes employees who work remotely and those who work on site, in a company's...

SearchCustomerExperience
  • Salesforce Trailhead

    Salesforce Trailhead is a series of online tutorials that coach beginner and intermediate developers who need to learn how to ...

  • Salesforce

    Salesforce, Inc. is a cloud computing and social enterprise software-as-a-service (SaaS) provider based in San Francisco.

  • data clean room

    A data clean room is a technology service that helps content platforms keep first person user data private when interacting with ...

Close