1. (From "scratchpad") Describes a data structure or recording medium attached to a machine for testing or temporary-use purposes; one that can be scribbled on without loss. Usually in the combining forms "scratch memory", "scratch register", "scratch disk", "scratch tape", "scratch volume".

See also: scratch monkey.

2. (primarily IBM) To delete (as in a file).

(01 Mar 1994)

SCRAP, scrape, scrape-off layer, scrapie < Prev | Next > scratch, scratch disk, scratcher

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1. A break in the surface of a thing made by scratching, or by rubbing with anything pointed or rough; a slight wound, mark, furrow, or incision. "The coarse file . . . Makes deep scratches in the work." (Moxon) "These nails with scratches deform my breast." (Prior) "God forbid a shallow scratch should drive The prince of Wales from such a field as this." (Shak)

2. A line across the prize ring; up to which boxers are brought when they join fight; hence, test, trial, or proof of courage; as, to bring to the scratch; to come up to the scratch.

3. <veterinary> Minute, but tender and troublesome, excoriations, covered with scabs, upon the heels of horses which have been used where it is very wet or muddy.

4. A kind of wig covering only a portion of the head.

5. A shot which scores by chance and not as intended by the player; a fluke. Scratch cradle. See Cratch cradle, under Cratch.

<botany> Scratch grass, a climbing knotweed (Polygonum sagittatum) with a square stem beset with fine recurved prickles along the angles. Scratch wig. Same as Scratch, 4, above.

(01 Mar 1998)

scrape, scrape-off layer, scrapie, scratch < Prev | Next > scratch disk, scratcher, scratches

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