I'm writing a modul of a programm with the purpose of painting a plot. I try to realize strong descriptiv names for the variables, which are mostly indices of something. So names using "index" are to be avoided.

Actually I'm looking for a name that describes the index relative to a single "point" on the plotted timeframe.

But just naming it "timepoint" sounds incorrect to me.

I googled through a lot of wiktionarys looking for synonyms of words representing a state in a range of time. But nothing did really fit.

So what would be the best fit for this? Or is timepoint not that incorrect and I should stay with it?

  • 2
    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because "Naming, including naming programming variables/classes " is explicitly out of place here Mar 14, 2016 at 12:30
  • @TimLymington: Why? my kind of question is the first point ("Word choice and usage") of the "What I can ask?"-page While the page explaining what not to ask (english.stackexchange.com/help/dont-ask), doesn't state anything of this question as invalid. Also note I'm not asking for a variable name, but for a word describing a point in frame of time. Where the programming part is just the given context.
    – Zaibis
    Mar 14, 2016 at 12:42
  • 2
    What about "moment"? Mar 14, 2016 at 13:17
  • @curiousdannii: I had this one in my mind aswell. But I came to the conclusion "moment" might be not specific enough. Since (afaik) a moment is something that is taking place at a given point (at that moment) but a moment isn't neccessearily the smallest unit of time. therefor a "moment" could span over multiple of these "time points" I'm looking for.
    – Zaibis
    Mar 14, 2016 at 13:33
  • In non scientific contexts I think most people would consider a moment to usually be indivisible, but if you don't like it, then maybe "instant" will do. Mar 14, 2016 at 13:36

3 Answers 3


"Snapshot" is frequently used to indicate the state of a system at a point in time; it follows that the point in time in question is often referred to as the "snapshot date" or "snapshot time" (depending on the level of accuracy being used).

  • This is one of the synonyms I came across. It still feels not satisfying but as longer I'm thinking about it is at least better than "timepoint". Maybe I'll use this one.
    – Zaibis
    Mar 14, 2016 at 12:06

Timepoint (or time-point) is a good term.

See for example std::chrono::time_point in the C++ library.


In video editing the term frame is commonly used to describe the smallest unit of time.

  • But this doesn't fit here, since I'm describing something that is represented by that frame relative to time. So I'm pointing to a single point (ie pixel) on that frame. which is not a frame by itself.
    – Zaibis
    Mar 14, 2016 at 12:59
  • In that case how about just using "pixel" and acknowledging that a pixel may have a story? or maybe call it "framepixel"?
    – Born2Smile
    Mar 14, 2016 at 13:08
  • Because a pixel has no relation to time and nothing to do with a y/time plot where a single point of time is refered.
    – Zaibis
    Mar 14, 2016 at 13:13
  • I still think 'framepixel' might do the trick, you are free to choose of course, someone else might come around with just the right word :) I would delete my answer, as clearly I misunderstood your question, however, I feel your comments do a better trick of explaining your situation, than does your question. So I shall leave it for now. Perhaps consider adding the sentiments in your comments to your original question?
    – Born2Smile
    Mar 14, 2016 at 13:20
  • Well the example with the pixel was just a analogy to the word "frame". But actually the only frame I have is my plot. And the only pixels at this layer are those required to display the plot. But thats nothing the modul has to be concerned with, so it is not usefull to bring in such naming. While I aggree that the comments here have clarificational value, I'm not sure this would be worth to edit in, since I specify I'm looking for a word describing "point in time".
    – Zaibis
    Mar 14, 2016 at 13:29

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