- The definition of a tool is a device with a specific purpose.
A hammer, paintbrush, computer and wrench are each an example of a tool.
- any implement, instrument, or utensil held in the hand and used to form, shape, fasten, add to, take away from, or otherwise change something by cutting, hitting, digging, rubbing, etc.: knives, saws, hammers, shovels, rakes, etc. are tools
- any similar instrument that is the working part of a power-driven machine, as a drill, band-saw blade, etc.
- the whole machine; machine tool
- anything that serves in the manner of a tool; a means: books are a scholar's tools
- a person used to accomplish another's purposes, esp. when these are illegal or unethical; dupe; stooge
- Slang the penis: somewhat vulgar
- Law any instrument or device necessary to one's profession or occupationin full tools of one's trade
Origin of toolMiddle English toole ; from Old English tol, akin to Old Norse tol ; from uncertain or unknown; perhaps Indo-European base an unverified form deu- from source taw
- to form, shape, or work with a tool
- to provide tools or machinery for (a factory, industry, etc.): often with up
- to drive (a vehicle)
- to convey (a person) in a vehicle
- to impress letters or designs on (leather, a book cover, etc.) with special tools
- to use a tool or tools
- to get or install the tools, equipment, etc. needed: often with up
- to ride or drive in a vehicle
- A device, such as a saw, shovel, or drill, used to perform or facilitate manual or mechanical work.
- a. A machine, such as a lathe, used to cut and shape machine parts or other objects.b. The cutting part of such a machine.
- Something regarded as necessary to the carrying out of one's occupation or profession: Words are the tools of our trade.
- Something used in the performance of an operation; an instrument: “Modern democracies have the fiscal and monetary tools &ellipsis; to end chronic slumps and galloping inflations” (Paul A. Samuelson).
- Vulgar Slang The penis.
- A person used to carry out the designs of another; a dupe.
- a. A bookbinder's hand stamp.b. A design impressed on a book cover by such a stamp.
- Computers A utility program.
verbtooled, tool·ing, tools
- To form, work, or decorate with a tool.
- To ornament (a book cover) with a bookbinder's tool.
- Slang To drive (a vehicle): tooled the car at 80 miles an hour.
- To work with a tool.
- Slang To drive or ride in a vehicle: tooled up and down the roads.
Origin of toolMiddle English, from Old English tōl, possibly from Old Norse.
- A mechanical device intended to make a task easier.
- Hand me that tool, would you? I don't have the right tools to start fiddling around with the engine.
- Equipment used in a profession, e.g., tools of the trade.
- These are the tools of the trade.
- Something to perform an operation; an instrument; a means.
- (computing) A piece of software used to develop software or hardware, or to perform low-level operations.
- The software engineer had been developing lots of EDA tools. a tool for recovering deleted files from a disk
- A person or group which is used or controlled, usually unwittingly, by another person or group.
- He was a tool, no more than a pawn to her.
- (slang) Penis.
- (by extension, slang, pejorative) An obnoxious or uptight person.
- He won't sell us tickets because it's 3:01, and they went off sale at 3. That guy's such a tool.
(third-person singular simple present tools, present participle tooling, simple past and past participle tooled)
- To work on or shape with tools, e.g., hand-tooled leather.
- To equip with tools.
- To work very hard.
- (slang) To put down another person (possibly in a subtle, hidden way), and in that way to use him or her to meet a goal.
- Dude, he's not your friend. He's just tooling you.
- (volleyball) To intentionally attack the ball so that it deflects off a blocker out of bounds.
- (UK, slang, dated) To drive (a coach, etc.)
From Middle English tool, from Old English tōl (“tool, implement, instrument”, literally “that with which one prepares something”), from Proto-Germanic *tōlą (“tool”), from Proto-Indo-European *dewǝ- (“to tie to, secure”), equivalent to taw (“to prepare”) + -le (agent suffix). Cognate with Scots tuil (“tool, implement, instrument, device”), Icelandic tól (“tool”), Faroese tól (“tool, instrument”). Related to Old English tāwian (“to make, prepare, or cultivate”); see taw, and tow ("fibres used for spinning").
tool - Computer Definition
(1) A program used for software development or system maintenance. Virtually any program or utility that helps programmers or users develop applications or maintain their computers can be called a tool. Examples of programming tools are compilers, interpreters, assemblers, 4GLs, editors, debuggers and application generators. See toolkit.
(2) A program that helps the user analyze or search for data. For example, query and report programs are often called query tools and report tools.
(3) An on-screen function in a graphics program; for example, a line draw, circle draw or brush tool.
(4) A software control panel for setting user preferences. See tools menu.
(5) Sometimes, people will call any software a "tool." For example, the phrase, "there aren't any tools to do that job" means that no application is available to perform the required processing.