<communications> 1. The time it takes for a packet to cross a network connection, from sender to receiver.

2. The period of time that a frame is held by a network device before it is forwarded.

Two of the most important parameters of a communications channel are its latency, which should be low, and its bandwidth, which should be high. Latency is particularly important for a synchronous protocol where each packet must be acknowledged before the next can be transmitted.

(01 May 2000)

1. <physiology> The time between onset of a stimulus and peak of the ensuing action potential.

2. <microbiology> Of an infection, a period in which the infection is present in the host without producing overt symptoms.

(11 Mar 2008)