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mouse

[n. mous; v. mouz] /n. maʊs; v. maʊz/
noun, plural mice
[mahys] /maɪs/ (Show IPA)
1.
any of numerous small Old World rodents of the family Muridae, especially of the genus Mus, introduced widely in other parts of the world.
2.
any similar small animal of various rodent and marsupial families.
3.
a quiet, timid person.
4.
Computers. a palm-sized, button-operated pointing device that can be used to move, select, activate, and change items on a computer screen.
Compare joystick (def 2), stylus (def 3).
5.
Informal. a swelling under the eye, caused by a blow or blows; black eye.
6.
Slang. a girl or woman.
verb (used with object), moused, mousing.
7.
to hunt out, as a cat hunts out mice.
8.
Nautical. to secure with a mousing.
verb (used without object), moused, mousing.
9.
to hunt for or catch mice.
10.
to prowl about, as if in search of something:
The burglar moused about for valuables.
11.
to seek or search stealthily or watchfully, as if for prey.
12.
Computers. to use a mouse to move the cursor on a computer screen to any position.
Origin
900
before 900; Middle English mous (plural mis), Old English mūs (plural mȳs); cognate with German Maus, Old Norse mūs, Latin mūs, Greek mŷs
Related forms
mouselike, adjective
Can be confused
mice, mouses.
mouse, mousse.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for mouse
  • The employee requires dexterity in using telephone, computer keyboard, mouse and calculator while seated at a desk.
  • Switching off the gene makes a fearful mouse courageous.
  • Scientists may not be able to build a better mouse trap, but they have learned how to build a better mouse.
  • Imagine you're a mouse running across an elaborately decorated rug.
  • The large caveats that inevitably apply to mouse studies still apply here, in spades.
  • Tests show that a new protein can trick the mouse immune system into accepting transplanted tissue instead of attacking it.
  • Don't begrudge a mouse the right cage because your office is in a broom closet.
  • To avoid false positives, more than one mouse must enter the room at the same time.
  • After the image appears in your browser, click the right-hand button on your mouse.
  • The white-footed mouse isn't much to look at, but a new study suggests it may be a superstar when it comes to evolution.
British Dictionary definitions for mouse

mouse

noun (maʊs) (pl) mice (maɪs)
1.
any of numerous small long-tailed rodents of the families Muridae and Cricetidae that are similar to but smaller than rats See also fieldmouse, harvest mouse, house mouse related adjective murine
2.
any of various related rodents, such as the jumping mouse
3.
a quiet, timid, or cowardly person
4.
(computing) a hand-held device used to control the cursor movement and select computing functions without keying
5.
(slang) a black eye
6.
(nautical) another word for mousing
verb (maʊz)
7.
to stalk and catch (mice)
8.
(intransitive) to go about stealthily
9.
(transitive) (nautical) to secure (a hook) with mousing
Derived Forms
mouselike, adjective
Word Origin
Old English mūs; compare Old Saxon mūs, German Maus, Old Norse mūs, Latin mūs, Greek mūs
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for mouse
n.

Old English mus "small rodent," also "muscle of the arm," from Proto-Germanic *mus (cf. Old Norse, Old Frisian, Middle Dutch, Danish, Swedish mus, Dutch muis, German Maus "mouse"), from PIE *mus- (cf. Sanskrit mus "mouse, rat," Old Persian mush "mouse," Old Church Slavonic mysu, Latin mus, Lithuanian muse "mouse," Greek mys "mouse, muscle").

Plural form mice (Old English mys) shows effects of i-mutation. Contrasted with man (n.) from 1620s. Meaning "black eye" (or other discolored lump) is from 1842. Computer sense is from 1965, though applied to other things resembling a mouse in shape since 1750, mainly nautical.

Parturiunt montes, nascetur ridiculus mus [Horace]

v.

"to hunt mice," mid-13c., from mouse (n.). Related: Moused; mousing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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mouse in Science
mouse
  (mous)   
Plural mice (mīs) or mouses
A hand-held input device that is moved about on a flat surface to direct the cursor on a computer screen. It also has buttons for activating computer functions. The underside of a mechanical mouse contains a rubber-coated ball that rotates as the mouse is moved; optical sensors detect the motion and move the screen pointer correspondingly. An optical mouse is cordless and uses reflections from an LED to track the mouse's movement over a special reflective mat which is marked with a grid that acts as a frame of reference.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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mouse in Culture

mouse definition


A common device that allows the user to reposition an arrow on their computer screen in order to activate desired applications. The term mouse comes from the appearance of the device, with the cord to the main computer being seen as a tail of sorts.

Note: The user usually sends signals to the computer when the user depresses or “clicks” a switch. A number of slang terms, such as “click on X” or “click and drag” have arisen from the appearance of symbols on a screen when a mouse is used.
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Slang definitions & phrases for mouse

mouse

noun
  1. A bruise near the eye, caused by a blow; black eye, shiner: One of the Kid's eyes has a little mouse under it (1842+)
  2. A young woman: a little mouse I got to know up in Michigan/ I'm pouring Dom Pe´rignon and black eggs into this little mouse (1655+)
  3. A term of endearment for a woman: Just stepping out for a minute, mouse (1520+)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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mouse in Technology


A mighty small macro language developed by Peter Grogono in 1975.
["Mouse, A Language for Microcomputers", P. Grogono grogono@concour.cs.concordia.ca Petrocelli Books, 1983].
(1994-10-31)

hardware, graphics
The most commonly used computer pointing device, first introduced by Douglas Engelbart in 1968. The mouse is a device used to manipulate an on-screen pointer that's normally shaped like an arrow. With the mouse in hand, the computer user can select, move, and change items on the screen.
A conventional roller-ball mouse is slid across the surface of the desk, often on a mouse mat. As the mouse moves, a ball set in a depression on the underside of the mouse rolls accordingly. The ball is also in contact with two small shafts set at right angles to each other inside the mouse. The rotating ball turns the shafts, and sensors inside the mouse measure the shafts' rotation. The distance and direction information from the sensors is then transmitted to the computer, usually through a connecting wire - the mouse's "tail". The computer then moves the mouse pointer on the screen to follow the movements of the mouse. This may be done directly by the graphics adaptor, but where it involves the processor the task should be assigned a high priority to avoid any perceptible delay.
Some mice are contoured to fit the shape of a person's right hand, and some come in left-handed versions. Other mice are symmetrical.
Included on the mouse are usually two or three buttons that the user may press, or click, to initiate various actions such as running programs or opening files. The left-most button (the primary mouse button) is operated with the index finger to select and activate objects represented on the screen. Different operating systems and graphical user interfaces have different conventions for using the other button(s). Typical operations include calling up a context-sensitive menu, modifying the selection, or pasting text. With fewer mouse buttons these require combinations of mouse and keyboard actions. Between its left and right buttons, a mouse may also have a wheel that can be used for scrolling or other special operations defined by the software. Some systems allow the mouse button assignments to be swapped round for left-handed users.
Just moving the pointer across the screen with the mouse typically does nothing (though some CAD systems respond to patterns of mouse movement with no buttons pressed). Normally, the pointer is positioned over something on the screen (an icon or a menu item), and the user then clicks a mouse button to actually affect the screen display.
The five most common "gestures" performed with the mouse are: point (to place the pointer over an on-screen item), click (to press and release a mouse button), double-click to press and release a mouse button twice in rapid succession, right-click (to press and release the right mouse button}, and drag (to hold down the mouse button while moving the mouse).
Most modern computers include a mouse as standard equipment. However, some systems, especially portable laptop and notebook models, may have a trackball, touchpad or Trackpoint on or next to the keyboard. These input devices work like the mouse, but take less space and don't need a desk.
Many other alternatives to the conventional roller-ball mouse exist. A tailless mouse, or hamster, transmits its information with infrared impulses. A foot-controlled mouse (http://footmouse.com/) is one used on the floor underneath the desk. An optical mouse uses a light-emitting diode and photocells instead of a rolling ball to track its position. Some optical designs may require a special mouse mat marked with a grid, others, like the Microsoft IntelliMouse Explorer, work on nearly any surface.
Yahoo! (http://dir.yahoo.com/Business_and_Economy/Companies/Computers/Hardware/Peripherals/Input_Devices/Mice/).
(http://peripherals.about.com/library/weekly/aa041498.htm).
PC Guide's "Troubleshooting Mice" (http://pcguide.com/ts/x/comp/mice.htm).
(1999-07-21)
The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010 http://foldoc.org
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mouse in the Bible

Heb. 'akhbar, "swift digger"), properly the dormouse, the field-mouse (1 Sam. 6:4). In Lev. 11:29, Isa. 66:17 this word is used generically, and includes the jerboa (Mus jaculus), rat, hamster (Cricetus), which, though declared to be unclean animals, were eaten by the Arabs, and are still eaten by the Bedouins. It is said that no fewer than twenty-three species of this group ('akhbar=Arab. ferah) of animals inhabit Palestine. God "laid waste" the people of Ashdod by the terrible visitation of field-mice, which are like locusts in their destructive effects (1 Sam. 6:4, 11, 18). Herodotus, the Greek historian, accounts for the destruction of the army of Sennacherib (2 Kings 19:35) by saying that in the night thousands of mice invaded the camp and gnawed through the bow-strings, quivers, and shields, and thus left the Assyrians helpless. (See SENNACHERIB.)

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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Idioms and Phrases with mouse
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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