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The Jolly Contrarian’s Dictionary

The snippy guide to financial services lingo.™

a substrate, yesterday


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Substrate /ˈsʌbstreɪt/ (n.)
1. The medium, not the message. An underlying substance or layer. The material on or from which an organism lives, grows or obtains its nourishment.
2. A material which provides the surface on which something is deposited or inscribed. A waxen tablet, a punched card, a magnetic disc.

Once upon a time the distinction between information and the substrate on which that information was conveyed was not apparent. The information in a letter, book, or newspaper was indistinguishable from the tangible paper on which it was printed.

But now.

(Sub-thread: is physically printed material “tangible” information? Or just a tangible substrate in which information is embedded?)

See also