Lobotomy

What Does Lobotomy Mean?

In IT, when people talk about a “lobotomy,” they are talking about removing or separating the “head” or main component of the computer system, in order to do some kind of maintenance or repair work or to alter the system somehow. The term is taken from its medical context where it refers to a significant brain surgery procedure.

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Techopedia Explains Lobotomy

One of the most common definitions of the slang term “lobotomy” in IT is for the process of removing the CPU or microprocessor. This effectively leaves a computer “without a brain.” In some cases, gamers or others might use the term “lobotomy” to talk about wiping clean a game drive or resetting a system to some original default. In addition, some may also use the term “lobotomized” to talk about an unwanted effect on a computer system — for instance, somebody might say something like, “I ran (X) software, and it lobotomized my laptop. Now I can’t boot up or run it at all!”

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Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.