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Definition: In a computer network, the amount of time required for a message to travel from the sending computer to the receiving computer.This is far from instantaneous in a packet-switching network, given the fact that the message must be read and passed on by several routers before it reaches its destination and results in jitter. In disk drives, the time required for the portion of the disk containing needed information to rotate under the read/write head.The faster a disk drive spins, the lower its latency.
Source: Pfaffenberger, Bryan. Webster's new world computer dictionary. London: Wiley, 2003