Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • transitive verb To bring into being; give rise to.
  • transitive verb To produce as a result of a chemical or physical process.
  • transitive verb To engender (offspring); procreate.
  • transitive verb Mathematics To form (a geometric figure) by describing a curve or surface.
  • transitive verb Computers To produce (a program) by instructing a computer to follow given parameters with a skeleton program.
  • transitive verb Linguistics In generative grammar, to construct (a sentence, for example) through the successive application of linguistic operations, rules, and conditions.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To beget; procreate; engender by sexual union.
  • To produce; cause to be; bring into life.
  • To cause; form; give origin to.
  • In mathematics, to give rise to, as to a geometrical figure; especially, to move so that the locus of the motion shall constitute (the figure specified): thus, a right line moving with one point fixed generates a conical surface.
  • To produce; evolve; as electricity, force, friction, gas, heat, light, velocity, etc.
  • In music, of a tone fundamental to a chord, to suggest or fix (the remaining tones of the harmony).

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • transitive verb To beget; to procreate; to propagate; to produce (a being similar to the parent); to engender.
  • transitive verb To cause to be; to bring into life.
  • transitive verb To originate, especially by a vital or chemical process; to produce; to cause.
  • transitive verb (Math.) To trace out, as a line, figure, or solid, by the motion of a point or a magnitude of inferior order.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • verb transitive To bring into being; give rise to.
  • verb transitive To produce as a result of a chemical or physical process.
  • verb transitive To procreate, beget.
  • verb transitive, mathematics To form a figure from a curve or solid.
  • verb intransitive To appear or occur; be generated.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • verb give or supply
  • verb make children
  • verb produce (energy)
  • verb bring into existence

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Latin generāre, generāt-, to produce, from genus, gener-, birth; see genə- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Latin generātus, perfect passive participle of generō ("beget, procreate, produce"), from genus ("a kind, race, family"); see genus.

Examples

  • Only a grammar containing both phrase structure and transformation rules, Chomsky argued, could generate a natural language ” ˜generate™ in the sense that by stepwise application of the rules, one could in principle build up from scratch all and only the sentences that the language contains.

    Innateness and Language

  • And did the title generate the story theme or did the story idea bring that particular title to mind?

    Books, The Guardian And More Damned Chickens

  • It's sad that the only attention you find you can still generate is over non-political tabloid issues.

    Palin accepts apology but says time for change

  • She added that the current space is too small for the amount of production Chrysler now intends to generate from the plant.

    Chrysler to Invest $600 Million in Illinois Plant

  • No, seriously, let me trundle on over to the random number generator ... and the number generate is 6.

    Tew's Day!

  • In the end, facing an economy that may never again generate in such quantity the sorts of "middle class" jobs Rembold was used to, what we may be seeing is the creation of a graying class of permanently unemployed (or underemployed) Americans, a genuine lost generation who will never recover from the recession of 2008.

    Andy Kroll: Unemployed: Stranded on the Sidelines of a Jobs Crisis

  • The vaccine did not work well enough – Some people get the vaccine, but the immune response their bodies generate is not strong enough or long-lived enough to protect them from infection.

    Feature Articles

  • In the end, facing an economy that may never again generate in such quantity the sorts of "middle class" jobs Rembold was used to, what we may be seeing is the creation of a graying class of permanently unemployed (or underemployed) Americans, a genuine lost generation who will never recover from the recession of 2008.

    Andy Kroll: Unemployed: Stranded on the Sidelines of a Jobs Crisis

  • She has no brain of her own, so her ideas must generate from the GOP itself.

    Palin warns of 'Second Holocaust' if Iran gains nuclear weapons

  • In the end, facing an economy that may never again generate in such quantity the sorts of "middle class" jobs Rembold was used to, what we may be seeing is the creation of a graying class of permanently unemployed (or underemployed) Americans, a genuine lost generation who will never recover from the recession of 2008.

    Andy Kroll: Unemployed: Stranded on the Sidelines of a Jobs Crisis

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