Word of the Day: Bias


bi-as / -əs


1. in a slanting manner, obliquely, diagonally

Bias cut tops and dresses accentuate body curves and drape beautifully with a few soft folds.

Olga Balasa, “How to Cut Fabric on the Bias”, www.ageberry.com/how-to-cut-fabric-on-bias, January 3, 2023


1. a diagonal line going across the grain of a woven fabric

When a pattern is cut on the bias, it means that the pattern pieces are not laid down onto the fabric straight, but diagonally!

“Mastering the Bias Cut”, www.brandijoan.com/blog/mastering-the-bias-cut, accessed March 16, 2023

2. inclination, partiality, preference

Bias and impartiality is in the eye of the beholder.

Samuel Johnson, 1709 – 1784

3. in statistics, erroneous sampling or test results due to the systematic favoring of some outcomes

In the end, only experience and clear thought, subjected when possible to the judgment of colleagues, can provide adequate freedom from bias.

From “Statistics in Medicine (Third Edition)” by R. H. Riffenburgh, ?

4. the application of a steady voltage to an electrode

Applying anodic bias on certain electrode materials is a way to enhance charge injection both in vitro and in vivo.

Alpaslan Ersöz, Insoo Kim, and Martin Han, “Maximizing Charge Injection Limits of Iridium Oxide Electrodes with a Programmable Anodic Bias Circuit”, ‘National Library of Medicine’, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8674787, accessed March 16, 2023

5. an uneven distribution of weight within an object that causes it to swerve, often used in bowling

The pair of legs that carried him were rickety, and there was a bias in his gait which inclined him somewhat to the left of a straight line.

From “Tess of the d’Urbervilles – A Pure Woman” by Thomas Hardy, 1840 – 1928


1. to influence unfairly, to show prejudice, to sway

No man is allowed to be a judge in his own cause, because his interest would certainly bias his judgment.

James Madison, 1751 – 1836