- black box
- black box ˌblack ˈbox noun [countable] informal1. an electronic unit that records information on an aircraft about its height, speed etc. If the plane crashes, the black box can be examined to find the causes:
• Data from the black box recovered from the destroyed helicopter has been played back satisfactorily.2. a machine that works in a secret way that is not normally explained to people:
• We found out what formulas were inside the black boxes that firms used to determine when to set off computer-driven program trades.
* * *black box UK US noun [C]► [usually singular] a system or process that uses information to produce a particular set of results, but that works in a way that is secret or difficult to understand: »
The main problem with many international capital flows is that they are non-transparent - they come from, and reside within, a 'black box'.► a piece of electronic equipment used to record and store information: »
Installation of a black box allows all emails sent and received to be monitored.► a piece of equipment on an aircraft that records the plane's movements and positions during a flight, and which can give important information if the plane has an accident: »
The black box often holds critical clues for investigators looking for the cause of fatal plane crashes.
Financial and business terms. 2012.