9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[wij-it] /ˈwɪdʒ ɪt/
a small mechanical device, as a knob or switch, especially one whose name is not known or cannot be recalled; gadget:
a row of widgets on the instrument panel.
something considered typical or representative, as of a manufacturer's products:
the widgets coming off the assembly line.
Origin of widget
1925-30; perhaps alteration of gadget Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for widgets
  • Factories take time to build, and can carry on cranking out widgets for years.
  • Moreover, the production of these widgets is not closely related to the number of local employees.
  • The growth of social media and widgets that let readers rank stories could surely help this to develop.
  • Kin phones have a browser and can access social networking sites through widgets.
  • The display allows for quick access to widgets such as weather and email.
  • But unlike other big-ticket corporations, it doesn't have an inventory of widgets or gadgets, cars or phones.
  • But it uses a lot of memory to throw those widgets on the side of the screen and make icons transparent.
  • Fine and dandy if you are selling widgets, but access to health care is different than access to widgets.
  • These prose-widgets are not hammered out by robots, surprisingly.
  • widgets are the best inventions since the telephone.
British Dictionary definitions for widgets


(informal) any small mechanism or device, the name of which is unknown or temporarily forgotten
a small device in a beer can which, when the can is opened, releases nitrogen gas into the beer, giving it a head
a small computer program that can be installed on and executed from the desktop of a personal computer
Word Origin
C20: changed from gadget
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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Contemporary definitions for widgets

an element of a graphical user interface such as a button or scroll bar; also, a module of software for a personalized Web page


The widget allows you to have "things to be happy about" on your Web site.

Word Origin

1987's 21st Century Lexicon
Copyright © 2003-2014, LLC
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Word Origin and History for widgets



"gadget, small manufactured item," c.1920, American English, probably an alteration of gadget, perhaps based on which it.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for widgets

wide open

adjective phrase
  1. Free of police hindrance; hospitable to profitable vice: Phoenix City was a famous wide-open town (1892+)
  2. Vulnerable; open to attack (1915+ Boxing)
  3. Going at full speed; flat out, like sixty
adverb phrase

: He always drove his bike wide open

[third sense from wide-open throttle, probably fr railroading]

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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