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

  • n. A cylinder of wood, plastic, cardboard, or other material on which wire, thread, or string is wound.
  • n. The amount of wire, thread, or string wound on such a cylinder.
  • n. Something similar to such a cylinder in shape or function.
  • n. A reel for magnetic tape.
  • transitive v. To wind or be wound on or off a spool.
  • transitive v. To store (data sent to a printer) in a buffer, allowing the program that sent the data to the printer to resume its normal operation.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A device around which thread, wire or cable is wound, especially a cylinder or spindle.
  • n. A temporary storage area for electronic mail, etc.
  • v. To wind on a spool or spools.
  • v. To send files to a device or a program (a spooler or a daemon that puts them in a queue for processing at a later time).
  • n. A small swimming pool that can be used also as a spa.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A piece of cane or reed with a knot at each end, or a hollow cylinder of wood with a ridge at each end, used to wind thread or yarn upon.
  • transitive v. To wind on a spool or spools.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To wind on a spool.
  • n. A small cylinder of wood or other material (with a projecting disk at each end), upon which thread or yarn is wound; a reel.
  • n. The revolving metal shaft of an anglers′ reel, upon which the fishing-line is wound. See cut under reel.
  • n. In electricity, the reel or bobbin upon which a resistance coil, magnet coil, or sometimes the field coil of a generator or motor is wound.

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

  • v. transfer data intended for a peripheral device (usually a printer) into temporary storage
  • v. wind onto a spool or a reel
  • n. a winder around which thread or tape or film or other flexible materials can be wound


Middle English spole, from Old North French espole and from Middle Dutch and Middle Low German spoele (Old North French, from Middle Dutch).
s(imultaneous) p(eripheral) o(perations) o(n) l(ine).
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
This definition is lacking an etymology or has an incomplete etymology. You can help Wiktionary by giving it a proper etymology. (Wiktionary)
From spa and pool (Wiktionary)



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  • Simultaneous

    September 8, 2008

  • Spoooool. Used delightfully by Beckett in "Krapp's Last Tape".

    September 24, 2007

  • Loops in reverse.

    July 22, 2007