(architecture, programming) Using words containing sixteen bits. This adjective often refers to the number of bits used internally by a computer's CPU. E.g. "The Intel 8086 is a sixteen bit processor". Its external data bus or address bus may be narrower. The term may also refer to the size of an instruction in the computer's instruction set or to any other item of data.See also 16-bit application.
Last updated: 1996-05-13