Browse Definitions :
Definition

hierarchy

Contributor(s): Ivy Wigmore

A hierarchy is an organizational structure in which items are ranked according to levels of importance. Most governments, corporations and organized religions are hierarchical.

In a computing context, there are various types of hierarchical systems. Most file systems, for example, are based on a hierarchical model in which files are placed somewhere in a hierarchical tree model. A file is placed in a directory (folder in Windows) or subdirectory at the desired place in the tree structure. The computer memory hierarchy ranks components in terms of response times, with processor registers at the top of the pyramid structure and tape backup at the bottom.

The word hierarchy comes from the Greek hieros, meaning sacred, and archein, meaning to rule. The word first entered English in the fourteenth century. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, it originally referred to “each of the three divisions of angels, every one comprising three orders, in the system of Dionysius the Areopagite.”

This was last updated in September 2012

Continue Reading About hierarchy

Start the conversation

Send me notifications when other members comment.

Please create a username to comment.

-ADS BY GOOGLE

File Extensions and File Formats

Powered by:

SearchCompliance

  • compliance audit

    A compliance audit is a comprehensive review of an organization's adherence to regulatory guidelines.

  • regulatory compliance

    Regulatory compliance is an organization's adherence to laws, regulations, guidelines and specifications relevant to its business...

  • Whistleblower Protection Act

    The Whistleblower Protection Act of 1989 is a law that protects federal government employees in the United States from ...

SearchSecurity

SearchHealthIT

SearchDisasterRecovery

  • cloud insurance

    Cloud insurance is any type of financial or data protection obtained by a cloud service provider. 

  • business continuity software

    Business continuity software is an application or suite designed to make business continuity planning/business continuity ...

  • business continuity policy

    Business continuity policy is the set of standards and guidelines an organization enforces to ensure resilience and proper risk ...

SearchStorage

  • business impact analysis (BIA)

    Business impact analysis (BIA) is a systematic process to determine and evaluate the potential effects of an interruption to ...

  • RAID (redundant array of independent disks)

    RAID (redundant array of independent disks) is a way of storing the same data in different places on multiple hard disks to ...

  • dedicated cloud

    A dedicated cloud is a single-tenant cloud infrastructure, which essentially acts as an isolated, single-tenant public cloud.

Close