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1. To give someone or something an electrical shock. The wires zapped me when I touched them. I just need to zap the battery to get the car started.
2. slang To shoot someone or something with a laser or something like a laser. You have to zap the bad guys in the game with the laser gun! Doctors are trying an experimental procedure where they zap the cancerous tumor with a ray of ionized particles.

zap out

1. To eliminate something that is unwanted or undesirable using some intense, eradicating energy or force, such as radiation or electricity. The controversial procedure uses a series of controlled electrical shocks to zap out violent or negative impulses. The electromagnetic device claims to zap out 99% of germs in a room after a single 30-second cycle.
2. To deplete the resources of someone, something, or oneself. A noun or pronoun can be used between "zap" and "out." The freak snow storm quickly zapped out the city's meager supply of salt used to keep the roads free of ice. The grueling work schedule zapped me out of all my energy.
See also: out, zap


Quickly switching between channels on a TV, as while looking for a program to watch. I'm channel-zapping, but it doesn't look like anything good is on.

zap out

Interrupt or delete unwanted parts of a television program or video, as in We've taped the show and now we can zap out all the commercials. [c. 1980]
See also: out, zap

channel hopping

and channel surfing and channel zapping
n. using a remote control to move quickly from one television channel to another, pausing only a short time on each channel. I wish you would stop channel hopping! He spends more time channel zapping than actually watching.
See also: channel, hop

channel zapping

See also: channel, zap


1. tv. to shock someone. That fake snake zapped me for a minute.
2. tv. to kill someone. The stress from it all nearly zapped him.
3. tv. to impress someone. My big idea really zapped the boss. I may get a raise.
4. tv. to stun someone with an imaginary ray gun. He zapped me with a water gun.
5. exclam. Wow! (Usually Zap!) He said, “Zap!” indicating that he really liked the present, I guess.
6. tv. to defeat someone or a team. Fred zapped Britney in the spelling bee.
7. in. to zip or move to somewhere very fast. He’s zapping to the drugstore for some aspirin.


1. mod. tired; exhausted. I’m too zapped to go on.
2. mod. alcohol or drug intoxicated. We all got zapped and then went home.
See also: zap
References in periodicals archive ?
From the above data the conclusion from the study was: "TherO Zap ™ technology indicates the application of heat at a specific temperature early (within 2 hours) during viral infection can significantly attenuate the viral replication and spread.
Together with our financial partners, we have ensured that Zap mobile commerce services meet all the required in-country banking regulations as stipulated by the respective Central Banks."- TradeArabia News Service
As a result of an increase in demand for electric cars and other forms of plug-in transportation, ZAP has increased its workforce by almost 30 percent since the beginning of the year, largely in its U.S.
"If the XEBRA XERO is exposed to sunlight during the day, and your commute is short, you can get pure solar-powered driving," ZAP Chairman Gary Starr said.
"ZAP has worked so long and so hard and invested millions of dollars to reach this point and now we can all finally benefit from the fruits of our labor," said ZAP chief executive officer Steve Schneider.
Contact: Jennifer Zimmons, ZAP, phone 212-838-1444, website
The Zap will provide facilities for young people in the local area and will open after school, at weekends and during the school holidays.
We use two calls for our option motion--Haze for the H-back and Zap for the Zap Receiver.
ZAP and Apollo Energy Systems recently announced the successful demonstration of Apollo's Ammonia Cracker system, which converts ammonia to hydrogen for use in fuel cells (FCs).
(The company strongly encourages police to zap themselves in Taser training.) The family of a San Francisco man who died of cardiac arrest after a New Year's Day tasering is also suing the company.
When the laser is tuned to zap the water within the nanostructures, a cascade of motions of water and surfactant molecules quickly incites random vibrations, or heating, of the solvent.
The Zap web site is aimed at children between the ages of 8 and 14, and in addition to offering information on netiquette and safe surfing, helps children to learn more about school-related topics in a enjoyable way.
To zap PRAM, all you need to remember is co-op-pr (Control, Option, P, R).
Another study by Zufryden, Pedrick, and Sankaralingam (1993) found that zapped commercials are significantly more effective than noninterrupted advertisements with respect to their impact on brandpurchase behavior, owing probably to a heightening of viewer attention to the TV set at the time of a zap. In contrast to Zufryden, Pedrick, and Sankaralingam's study, Speck and Elliott (1997) electronically tracked the viewing behavior of a sample of 1,000 homes.
The next time you hear a police siren and see flashing lights on city streets, don't expect the accompanying squeal of rubber tires on asphalt, because the officers may be riding electric ZAP (Zero Air Pollution) tactical police bikes.