shortcut

noun
short·​cut | \ ˈshȯrt-ˌkət also -ˈkət How to pronounce shortcut (audio) \

Definition of shortcut

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a route more direct than the one ordinarily taken
2 : a method or means of doing something more directly and quickly than and often not so thoroughly as by ordinary procedure a shortcut to success
3 : a key or combination of keys on a computer keyboard programmed to perform a specific function when pressed You can open any item by clicking it or by assigning it a keyboard shortcut.— Christopher Breen

called also hot key

shortcut

verb
shortcut; shortcutting

Definition of shortcut (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to shorten (a route, a procedure, etc.) by use of a shortcut also : circumvent

intransitive verb

: to take or use a shortcut

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Synonyms & Antonyms for shortcut

Synonyms: Verb

beat, bypass, circumvent, dodge, get around, sidestep, skirt

Antonyms: Verb

comply (with), follow, keep, obey, observe

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Examples of shortcut in a Sentence

Noun

Wait, I know a shortcut. Turn left here. We took a shortcut home. Let's take the shortcut through the woods. I used a shortcut to calculate the total weight. There are no shortcuts to learning another language. Mistakes were made because too many shortcuts were taken.

Verb

are you sure there's no way to shortcut the entrance requirements?
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

But my joyful discovery of this shortcut was short lived. Emily Chiu, Redbook, "Why I Never Put Christmas Presents In Gift Bags," 5 Nov. 2018 Just outside the tunnel in Union City, site of many a shortcut via GPS apps, extra police were deployed to oversee busy intersections. David Porter, Fox News, "NYC commuters are spared a nightmare as road project starts," 21 Aug. 2018 For those eternally in search of a shortcut, some of the most fascinating research is taking place in the military. Ashley Fetters, Bon Appetit, "How Sleep Became a Wellness Fixation," 29 May 2018 Participants will learn to utilize keyboard shortcuts, design fundamentals, and the software’s toolbar of useful features. Allison Hagan, BostonGlobe.com, "Weekend agenda," 12 July 2018 The easiest way to use picture-in-picture is to hit the keyboard shortcut super-F, which will change your cursor into a crosshairs. Scott Gilbertson, Ars Technica, "A tour of elementary OS, perhaps the Linux world’s best hope for the mainstream," 28 Dec. 2018 The shortcuts to a super-speedy taco night: one baking sheet and a hot broiler. The Healthyish Team, Bon Appetit, "Healthy 4th of July Recipes to Eat Outdoors (With Lots of SPF On)," 13 June 2018 There’s no shortcut here: Look up your router’s brand, model and serial numbers, figure out its default password, log onto its internal control software, and download a patch from the company’s website. Hiawatha Bray, BostonGlobe.com, "FBI warns consumers about malware aimed at Internet routers," 24 May 2018 The shortcut to solving the toughest industrial-policy issues is revisiting solutions explored in past discussions. Jeff Moon, WSJ, "Reading the Tea Leaves on Trade With China," 4 Dec. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Rest assured, these aren’t actual apps, but instead shortcuts to Nokia’s web client. Michael Zelenko, The Verge, "There’s no perfect minimalist phone — yet," 3 May 2018 To push revenues to 2008 levels, Zinke would have to do more than sell leases and help companies shortcut environmental regs. Elliott D. Woods, Outside Online, "Zinke's Plan to Fund the Park Service Is Pure Fantasy," 24 Mar. 2018 Lidia Bastianich knows how to shortcut even the simplest of recipes. Jill Wendholt Silva, charlotteobserver, "Want to celebrate with style? Celebrate like an Italian – Lidia Bastianich | Charlotte Observer," 22 Dec. 2017 Technically, pesto should be pounded or processed to a paste, but sometimes shortcuts pay off. Claire Saffitz, Bon Appetit, "Pasta with Chopped Pesto," 19 Aug. 2017 These kinds of horizontal gene transfers, where genes shortcut the usual passage from parent to offspring and instead move directly between individuals, are rare in animals, but common among bacteria. Ed Yong, The Atlantic, "How Mushrooms Became Magic," 24 Aug. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'shortcut.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of shortcut

Noun

1637, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1915, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

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Statistics for shortcut

Last Updated

18 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for shortcut

The first known use of shortcut was in 1637

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More Definitions for shortcut

shortcut

noun

English Language Learners Definition of shortcut

: a shorter, quicker, or easier way to get to a place
: a quicker or easier way to do something

shortcut

noun
short·​cut | \ ˈshȯrt-ˌkət How to pronounce shortcut (audio) \

Kids Definition of shortcut

: a shorter, quicker, or easier way

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More from Merriam-Webster on shortcut

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with shortcut

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for shortcut

Spanish Central: Translation of shortcut

Nglish: Translation of shortcut for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of shortcut for Arabic Speakers

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