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pinpoint

[pin-point] /ˈpɪnˌpɔɪnt/
noun
1.
the point of a pin.
2.
a trifle; pinhead.
3.
a tiny spot or sharp point.
verb (used with object)
4.
to locate or describe exactly or precisely:
to pinpoint the problem.
adjective
5.
exact; precise:
pinpoint accuracy.
Origin of pinpoint
1840-1850
First recorded in 1840-50; pin + point
Synonyms
3. spot, localize, identify, define.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for pinpoint
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • From without the moonbeams flooded it, from within came no pinpoint of light.

    The Long Roll Mary Johnston
  • I caught the pinpoint gleam of what might have been a knife in her hand.

    Beyond the Vanishing Point Raymond King Cummings
  • Tawney's face was a study of uneasiness, but he clearly could not pinpoint what the trouble was.

    Gold in the Sky Alan Edward Nourse
  • As they walked he tried to pinpoint directions, but because of the darkness he could not do so.

    Trading Jeff and his Dog James Arthur Kjelgaard
  • Not many hours before, it had been only a dust mote, a pinpoint of light in the void.

    Sugar Plum

    Reginald Bretnor
British Dictionary definitions for pinpoint

pinpoint

/ˈpɪnˌpɔɪnt/
verb (transitive)
1.
to locate or identify exactly: to pinpoint a problem, to pinpoint a place on a map
noun
2.
an insignificant or trifling thing
3.
the point of a pin
4.
(modifier) exact: a pinpoint aim
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for pinpoint
n.

also pin-point, "point of a pin," 1849, from pin (n.) + point (n.). Taken into aeronautics in sense "place identified from the air," hence verb meaning "locate precisely" (1917), which originally was aviators' slang. Related: Pinpointed; pinpointing. As an adjective, "performed with precisional accuracy," 1944, originally of aerial bombing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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