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Probably from Yiddish גליטש(glitsh), from dialectal German glitschig (slippy), from glitsch (slide, glide, slip) + -ig (-y). Related to gleiten (glide). Cognate with French glisser (to slip, to slide, to skid).

Popularized 1960s, by US space program. Attested 1962 by American astronaut John Glenn, in reference to spikes in electrical current.[1]



English Wikipedia has an article on:

glitch (plural glitches)

  1. A problem affecting function
    They are still trying to work out all the glitches.
    Synonyms: bug, imperfection, quirk
  2. (video games) A bug or an exploit.
    Performing this glitch gives you extra lives.
  3. (music) A genre of experimental electronic music of the 1990s, characterized by a deliberate use of sonic artifacts that would normally be viewed as unwanted noise.
  4. (engineering) A signal that does not remain active for a full clock period.[2]


  • 1962, John Glenn[1]
    Literally, a glitch is a spike or change in voltage in an electrical current.
  • 1965, Time magazine
    Glitches—a spaceman’s word for irritating disturbances.

Derived terms[edit]


The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.


glitch (third-person singular simple present glitches, present participle glitching, simple past and past participle glitched)

  1. To experience an intermittent, unexpected, malfunction
    My computer keeps glitching; every couple of hours it just reboots without warning.
  2. (video games) To perform an exploit or recreate a bug while playing a video game.
    His character will glitch into the wall and out of the level.


  1. 1.0 1.1 Moradi, Iman. (2004) Glitch Aesthetic
  2. ^ Microchip, "Application Notes", #1451-A,