Browse Definitions :
Definition

rabbit hole

Contributor(s): Ivy Wigmore

A rabbit hole, in a metaphorical sense, is a long and winding exploratory path with many connections and offshoots. 

The term rabbit hole is often used to describe online activities. The Web was essentially designed to function as a rabbit hole because of the way hyperlinks work, and Web surfing in general can be considered a voluntary trip down the rabbit hole. More purposeful examples of activities that tend to follow such paths include Web analytics, data analytics and various types of research. Interactive voice response (IVR) systems and help desk calls are among the other types of rabbit holes that people enter intentionally, if somewhat reluctantly. 

In a fall down the rabbit hole, an individual sets off on the path with a goal, gets sidetracked by various events and changes direction several times along the way, eventually ending up somewhere unexpected, typically without having satisfied the original purpose of the quest. Nevertheless, the path often leads to serendipitous discoveries. Furthermore, according to the principle of obliquity, the meandering path may eventually turn out to be more productive than a more direct one. 

The term rabbit hole comes from Lewis Carroll's "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland," in which a young girl called Alice falls down a rabbit hole, encounters many strange creatures and has many surreal experiences.

This was last updated in November 2013

Continue Reading About rabbit hole

Join the conversation

1 comment

Send me notifications when other members comment.

Please create a username to comment.

This site does not define "voice mail jail" but it is a type of "rabbit hole" in which you try to leave a message and you can't get through the touch-tone menus, either to leave a message for the particular user, the main operator, or someone else, or in which it prevents you from reaching a live operator.
Cancel

-ADS BY GOOGLE

File Extensions and File Formats

SearchCompliance

  • risk assessment

    Risk assessment is the identification of hazards that could negatively impact an organization's ability to conduct business.

  • PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard)

    The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) is a widely accepted set of policies and procedures intended to ...

  • risk management

    Risk management is the process of identifying, assessing and controlling threats to an organization's capital and earnings.

SearchSecurity

SearchHealthIT

  • telemedicine (telehealth)

    Telemedicine is the remote delivery of healthcare services, such as health assessments or consultations, over the ...

  • Project Nightingale

    Project Nightingale is a controversial partnership between Google and Ascension, the second largest health system in the United ...

  • medical practice management (MPM) software

    Medical practice management (MPM) software is a collection of computerized services used by healthcare professionals and ...

SearchDisasterRecovery

SearchStorage

  • hot plugging

    Hot plugging is the addition of a component to a running computer system without significant interruption to the operation of the...

  • M.2 SSD

    An M.2 SSD is a solid-state drive (SSD) that conforms to a computer industry specification and is used in internally mounted ...

  • kilobyte (KB or Kbyte)

    A kilobyte (KB or Kbyte) is a unit of measurement for computer memory or data storage used by mathematics and computer science ...

Close