AskDefine | Define compute

Dictionary Definition

compute v : make a mathematical calculation or computation [syn: calculate, cipher, cypher, work out, reckon, figure]

User Contributed Dictionary



  • /kɒmpjuːt/
  • Rhymes: -uːt


From computer (17th century).


  1. To reckon or calculate.
    Can anyone here compute the square root of 10201?
  2. To make sense.
    Does that compute, or do I need to explain further?




  1. Form of First-person singular present subjunctive, computer#French|computer
  2. Form of Third-person singular present subjunctive, computer#French|computer
  3. Form of Second-person singular imperative, computer#French|computer

Extensive Definition

portalpar Information technology Computing is the activity of developing and using computer technology, including computer hardware and software. It is the computer-specific part of information technology. Computer science is the study of the theoretical foundations of computing and the application of the theories in computing.
Computing Curricula 2005 defined computing:
''In a general way, we can define computing to mean any goal-oriented activity requiring, benefiting from, or creating computers. Thus, computing includes designing and building hardware and software systems for a wide range of purposes; processing, structuring, and managing various kinds of information; doing scientific studies using computers; making computer systems behave intelligently; creating and using communications and entertainment media; finding and gathering information relevant to any particular purpose, and so on. The list is virtually endless, and the possibilities are vast.


The term computing has sometimes been narrowly defined, as in a 1989 ACM report on Computing as a Discipline: The discipline of computing is the systematic study of algorithmic processes that describe and transform information: their theory, analysis, design, efficiency, implementation, and application. The fundamental question underlying all computing is 'What can be (efficiently) automated?
Computing Curricula 2005 also recognizes that the meaning of computing depends on the context:
Computing also has other meanings that are more specific, based on the context in which the term is used. For example, an information systems specialist will view computing somewhat differently from a software engineer. Regardless of the context, doing computing well can be complicated and difficult. Because society needs people to do computing well, we must think of computing not only as a profession but also as a discipline.
The term computing'' is also synonymous with counting and calculating. In earlier times it was used in reference to mechanical computing machines.

Science and theory

Instruction-level taxonomies

After the commoditization of memory, attention turned to optimizing CPU performance at the instruction level. Various methods of speeding up the fetch-execute cycle include:

Business computing

Computing technology based wireless networking (CbWN)

The main of goal of CbWN is to optimize the system performance of the flexible wireless network.

Character data

Classes of computers

Companies - current

Companies - historic

Standards bodies

See also: Standardization and Standards organization

Open standards

See also Open standard

See also


compute in Arabic: حوسبة
compute in Spanish: Informática
compute in Korean: 컴퓨팅
compute in Japanese: コンピューティング

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

add, add up, algebraize, appraise, appreciate, ascertain, assay, assess, calculate, calibrate, caliper, cast, check a parameter, cipher, determine, dial, divide, dope out, estimate, evaluate, extract roots, fathom, figure, figure in, figure out, gauge, graduate, measure, mensurate, mete, meter, multiply, pace, plumb, prize, probe, quantify, quantize, rate, reckon, score, size, size up, sound, span, step, subtract, sum, survey, take a reading, take account of, tally, tot, tot up, total, total up, tote, tote up, triangulate, valuate, value, weigh, work out
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