Definition of floating in US English:



  • 1Buoyant or suspended in water or air.

    ‘a massive floating platform’
    • ‘Until Katrina, Mississippi law required that casinos be located on water in floating barges.’
    • ‘Numbers hit by global warming and loss of nest sites; floating water plantain is increasingly under threat from the re-opening of canals to heavy traffic.’
    • ‘Aquatics with floating leaves, water lilies included, also need yearly attention.’
    • ‘It consisted of quick images of rushing water and occasional floating message bottles with the overlaid pulse of surf breaking on shore.’
    • ‘Less obvious has been the relocation into deeper water of floating marinas and the extension of launch ramps.’
    • ‘They're well watered and under floating row covers with wire hoops, all securely fastened to take the wind we've been having.’
    • ‘On either side of it, the city seemed to give way entirely for the airway; it hung, suspended, like a floating river cutting through a steep, shining landscape.’
    • ‘As a safety precaution, you can add a floating cattle water trough heater, which has a built in thermostat, to keep at least a section of the pool from freezing solid.’
    • ‘It was mounted about three meters above the water on a crude and rickety floating platform.’
    • ‘Low oxygen conditions develop beneath water hyacinth and the dense floating mats impede water flow and create good breeding conditions for mosquitoes.’
    • ‘As I have said before rearing a family when you spend all your life on floating water weeds is a hazardous business.’
    • ‘He may favor a floating leaf of water plantain (which is plentiful in our creek).’
    • ‘At a glacial terminus in quiet water, floating ice melts slowly and often drops exotic rocks and sediment far out on a lake bottom.’
    • ‘Both parents help build the well-concealed nest, which is a floating platform of weeds anchored to emergent vegetation in shallow water.’
    • ‘In the murky water were hundreds of floating chests of tea.’
    • ‘A kookaburra flies between the clusters of trees with buoyant, floating wing beats.’
    • ‘She tossed a floating toy into the water for her dog to fetch over and over.’
    • ‘At the moment there is deeper water and reasonable floating weed cover in one area, so the Jacanas have not left.’
    • ‘One of its striking features will be the use of water to create a floating deck for relaxation.’
    • ‘His favorite is a remote touch pad near the back of the boat that allows the Balls to control the stereo without having to leave the comfort of their floating water toys.’
    buoyant, buoyed up, non-submerged, on the surface, above water, afloat, drifting
    hovering, levitating, suspended, hanging, defying gravity
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  • 2Not settled in a definite place; fluctuating or variable.

    ‘the floating population that is migrating to the cities’
    • ‘The larvae spend several months as floating zooplankton before settling down onto the reef.’
    • ‘According to the fifth demographic census, there was a floating population of 120 million in China, mostly young people.’
    • ‘The school's foreman Xu Panzhong prefers to call it ‘school for children of the floating population.’’
    • ‘The mine ended as a failure, and to settle a floating indebtedness all movable equipment was sold in 1865.’
    • ‘The commercial complexes that will surely follow the residential buildings may have a floating population of about 5,000.’
    • ‘While surfing the Internet to check on the floating population, police found that Li was renting a house in the district.’
    • ‘The Health Bureau also said it would provide free TB inoculation for some groups among the students, the elderly and the floating population.’
    • ‘Experts said that with social development, the floating population has increased, placing a lot of pressure on the social order.’
    • ‘Mr Leese said the area had a large floating population which had the potential of masking the activities of anyone who wanted to remain unnoticed.’
    • ‘To the floating population of Tibetans, this ‘Benson Town Auntie’ is any-time mom with plenty of tender care to dispense.’
    • ‘However, the education programme is a difficult task because of the large floating population and frequent international comings and goings.’
    • ‘He is now leading a Ford Foundation-sponsored project on education of the floating population which kicked off earlier this year.’
    • ‘For, they are eager to see the floating population streaming in at the time of political meetings, since it leads to a surge in their business transactions.’
    • ‘Commercial complexes coming up in the area, specially on main roads, have brought with them a large floating population and also vehicles.’
    • ‘The United States, Australia and China's Hong Kong have the world's largest floating populations.’
    • ‘Further, with a chunk of the floating population in the city being rural people, it is just impossible to expect them to follow road rules strictly.’
    • ‘Some analysts said the reason for the sharp rise in robberies was due to an increase in the floating populations of some large cities and more illegal drug use.’
    • ‘There is already a floating population of 100 million or more migrants seeking work in cities.’
    • ‘The Spring Festival is the biggest festival for family reunions, drawing many of the floating population and workers to their homes in other provinces.’
    • ‘An open-air debate with Solomon Pappiya as the moderator, near bus stands and public places in rural areas, is meant to target the floating population.’
    unsettled, not settled, not fixed, transient, temporary, variable, fluctuating
    variable, changeable, changing, fluid, fluctuating, free, not fixed
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