He strokes the photocopier; he adores the machine, the way it flashes like lightning as it works, the way it whirs and hums.
The small Turkish city of Kilis, on the border with Syria, hums quietly with rebel activity from the neighboring civil war.
late 14c., hommen "make a murmuring sound to cover embarrassment," later hummen "to buzz, drone" (early 15c.), probably of imitative origin. Sense of "sing with closed lips" is first attested late 15c.; that of "be busy and active" is 1884, perhaps on analogy of a beehive. Related: Hummed; humming. Humming-bird (1630s) so called from sound made by the rapid vibration of its wings.
There is a curious bird to see to, called a humming bird, no bigger then a great Beetle. [Thomas Morton, "New English Canaan," 1637]
mid-15c., from hum (v.).
A low, continuous murmur blended of many sounds.