|n.||1.||The act of informing, or communicating knowledge or intelligence.|
|2.||Any fact or set of facts, knowledge, news, or advice, whether communicated by others or obtained by personal study and investigation; any datum that reduces uncertainty about the state of any part of the world; intelligence; knowledge derived from reading, observation, or instruction.|
|3.||(Law) A proceeding in the nature of a prosecution for some offense against the government, instituted and prosecuted, really or nominally, by some authorized public officer on behalf of the government. It differs from an indictment in criminal cases chiefly in not being based on the finding of a grand jury. See Indictment.|
|4.||(Information Theory) A measure of the number of possible choices of messages contained in a symbol, signal, transmitted message, or other information-bearing object; it is usually quantified as the negative logarithm of the number of allowed symbols that could be contained in the message; for logarithms to the base 2, the measure corresponds to the unit of information, the |
|5.||(Computers) Useful facts, as contrasted with raw data; |
|Noun||1.||information - a message received and understood|
|2.||information - a collection of facts from which conclusions may be drawn; "statistical data"|
|3.||information - knowledge acquired through study or experience or instruction|
|4.||information - (communication theory) a numerical measure of the uncertainty of an outcome; "the signal contained thousands of bits of information"|
|5.||information - formal accusation of a crime|
INFORMATION. An accusation or complaint made in writing to a court of
competent jurisdiction, charging some person with a specific violation of
some public law. It differs in nothing from an indictment in its form and
substance, except that it is filed at the discretion of the proper law
officer of the government, ex officio, without the intervention or approval
of a grand jury. 4 Bl. Com. 308, 9.
2. In the French law, the term information is used to signify the act or instrument which contains the depositions of witnesses against the accused. Poth. Proc. Cr. sect. 2, art. 5.
3. Informations have for their object either to punish a crime or misdemeanor, and these have,.perhaps, never been resorted to in the United States or to recover penalties or forfeitures, which are quite common. For the form and requisites of an information for a penalty, see 2 Chit. Pr. 155 to 171. Vide Blake's Ch. 49; 14 Vin. Ab. 407; 3 Story, Constitution, Sec. 1780 3 Bl. Com. 261.
4. In summary proceedings before justices of the peace, the complaint or accusation, at least when the proceedings relate to a penalty, is called an information, and it is then taken down in writing and sworn to. As the object is to limit the informer to a certain charge, in order that the defendant may know what he has to defend, and the justice may limit the evidence and his subsequent adjudication to the allegations in the information, it follows that the substance of the particular complaint must be stated and it must be sufficiently formal to contain all material averments. 8 T. R. 286; 5 Barn. & Cres. 251; 11 E. C. L. R. 217; 2 Chit. Pr. 156. See 1 Wheat. R. 9.