Pronunciation Verb

scan (scans, present participle scanning; past and past participle scanned)

  1. (poetry, transitive) To read or mark so as to show a specific meter. [from 14th C.]
    to scan verse
    1. (intransitive) To conform to a metrical structure.
    • quote en
  2. (transitive) To examine sequentially, carefully, or critically; to scrutinize; to behold closely. [from 16th C.]
    She scanned the passage carefully but could not find what she was looking for.
    • 1927-29, M.K. Gandhi, The Story of My Experiments with Truth, translated 1940 by Mahadev Desai, Part I, Chapter ii ↗:
      Yet the incident did not in the least diminish my respect for my teacher. I was by nature blind to the faults of elders. Later I came to know of many other failings of this teacher, but my regard for him remained the same. For I had learnt to carry out the orders of elders, not to scan their actions.
  3. (transitive) To look about for; to look over quickly. [from 19th C.]
    He scanned the horizon.
    1. (computing, transitive) To inspect, analyze or go over, often to find something.
      to scan the hard drive for errors
    2. (computing, transitive) To perform lexical analysis; to tokenize.
  4. (computing, transitive) To create a digital copy of an image using a scanner.
    to scan a photograph
    Pencil drawings don't scan very well.
  5. (computing, transitive) To read with an electronic device.
    to scan a barcode; to scan a QR code
  6. (obsolete, transitive, originally) To mount by steps; to go through with step by step.
    • 1816, Lord Byron, Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage. Canto the Third, London: Printed for John Murray, […], OCLC 1015450009 ↗, canto III, stanza LXIII, page 36 ↗:
      But ere these matchless heights I dare to scan, / There is a spot should not be pass'd in vain,— / Morat ! the proud, the patriot field ! where man / May gaze on ghastly trophies of the slain,{{...}
Related terms Translations Translations Translations Noun

scan (plural scans)

  1. Close investigation. [from 1700s]
  2. (computing) An instance of scanning.
    The operators vacated the room during the scan.
  3. (computing) The result or output of a scanning process.
    The doctors looked at the scans and made a diagnosis.
Translations Translations
  • French: scan
  • German: Scan
  • Russian: скан

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