backspace

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backspace

[′bak‚spās]
(computer science)
To move a recording medium one unit in the reverse or background direction.
(mechanical engineering)
To move a typewriter carriage back one space by depressing a backspace key.

backspace

(character)
(BS) ASCII code 8, Control-H. The control character that should cause most output devices to move their current output position back to the previous character so that the next character output will replace (or overprint) it. Inputting a backspace (typically by pressing the backspace key) causes many systems to delete the character before the input cursor, though others use delete for this.

See twirling baton for an imaginitive use of backspace.

backspace

(1) To move the screen cursor one character to the left, deleting the character that was in that position. A backspace to the printer moves the print head one character to the left. In contrast, the DEL key deletes the character under the cursor. On Windows machines, there are backspace and DEL keys. On Mac laptops (not desktop computers), there is only a backspace key, which drives Windows users crazy when using a Mac laptop.

(2) To move to the previous block on a magnetic tape.