N: /N/ Quant. 1. A Large And Indeterminate Number Of Objec

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:N: /N/ quant. 1. A large and indeterminate number of objects:
"There were N bugs in that crock!" Also used in its
original sense of a variable name: "This crock has N bugs,
as N goes to infinity." (The true number of bugs is always
at least N + 1; see {Lubarsky's Law of Cybernetic
Entomology}.) 2. A variable whose value is inherited from the
current context. For example, when a meal is being ordered at a
restaurant, N may be understood to mean however many people
there are at the table. From the remark "We'd like to order
N wonton soups and a family dinner for N - 1" you
can deduce that one person at the table wants to eat only soup,
even though you don't know how many people there are (see
{great-wall}). 3. `Nth': adj. The ordinal counterpart
of N, senses 1 and 2. "Now for the Nth and last
time..." In the specific context "Nth-year grad
student", N is generally assumed to be at least 4, and is
usually 5 or more (see {tenured graduate student}). See also
{{random numbers}}, {two-to-the-N}.
-- The AI Hackers Dictionary