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[weyv-lit] /ˈweɪv lɪt/
a small wave; ripple.
Origin of wavelet
1800-10; wave + -let Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for wavelet
Historical Examples
  • They are in circumstances in which the ripple passes into the wavelet, and the wavelet into the billow.

  • Act at first as though every wavelet would surely swamp you.

    The Forest Stewart Edward White
  • The result was that the eye saw nothing of the water or the wavelet, but caught only the brilliant glow.

    Nature Near London Richard Jefferies
  • Again a wavelet, and another, and another flowed over the stone, and wetted both the prince's knees; but he did not speak or move.

  • A wavelet splashed up against the clay on which they were standing.

    The Beth Book Sarah Grand
  • For every wavelet of land upon the surface of the Boer States, a hundred great billows stand up in Natal.

  • Every wavelet on the waters hushed itself asleep, and the whole surface of the lake was as a sea of polished glass.

  • Second base was in the wavelet which lapped the beach, with third base opposite first.

    The Boy Patrol on Guard Edward S. Ellis
  • Her voice was curiously soft, without the least ring or even suggestion of firmness; warm and yielding as a summer wavelet.

    Cleo The Magnificent Louis Zangwill
  • He felt himself caught in a mighty eddy, bearing he knew not whither; he, one wavelet amid the sea's myriads.

    God Wills It! William Stearns Davis
British Dictionary definitions for wavelet


a small wave
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 wavelet

1813, diminutive of wave (n.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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wavelet in Science
A small wave; a ripple. See more at wave.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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wavelet in Technology
A waveform that is bounded in both frequency and duration. Wavelet tranforms provide an alternative to more traditional Fourier transforms used for analysing waveforms, e.g. sound.
The Fourier transform converts a signal into a continuous series of sine waves, each of which is of constant frequency and amplitude and of infinite duration. In contrast, most real-world signals (such as music or images) have a finite duration and abrupt changes in frequency.
Wavelet transforms convert a signal into a series of wavelets. In theory, signals processed by the wavelet transform can be stored more efficiently than ones processed by Fourier transform. Wavelets can also be constructed with rough edges, to better approximate real-world signals.
For example, the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation found that Fourier transforms proved inefficient for approximating the whorls of fingerprints but a wavelet transform resulted in crisper reconstructed images.
SBG Austria (
["Ten Lectures on Wavelets", Ingrid Daubechies].
The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010
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