verb (used with object), com·put·ed, com·put·ing.

  1. to determine by calculation; reckon; calculate: to compute the period of Jupiter’s revolution.
  2. to determine by using a computer or calculator.

verb (used without object), com·put·ed, com·put·ing.

  1. to reckon; calculate.
  2. to use a computer or calculator.
  3. Informal. to make sense; add up: His reasons for doing that just don’t compute.


  1. computation: outer space that is vast beyond compute.


  1. to calculate (an answer, result, etc), often with the aid of a computer


  1. calculation; computation (esp in the phrase beyond compute)

v.1630s, from French computer, from Latin computare “to count, sum up, reckon together,” from com- “with” (see com-) + putare “to reckon,” originally “to prune” (see pave). Related: Computed; computing.

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