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round robin

A round robin is an arrangement of choosing all elements in a group equally in some rational order, usually from the top to the bottom of a list and then starting again at the top of the list and so on. A simple way to think of round robin is that it is about "taking turns." Used as an adjective, round robin becomes "round-robin."

In computer operation, one method of having different program process take turns using the resources of the computer is to limit each process to a certain short time period, then suspending that process to give another process a turn (or "time-slice"). This is often described as round-robin process scheduling.

In sports tournaments and other games, round-robin scheduling arranges to have all teams or players take turns playing each other, with the winner emerging from the succession of events.

A round-robin story is one that is started by one person and then continued successively by others in turn. Whether an author can get additional turns, how many lines each person can contribute, and how the story can be ended depend on the rules. Some Web sites have been created for the telling of round robin stories by each person posting the next part of the story as part of an online conference thread .

This was last updated in June 2010
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