A gizmo is a device used for a specific job. A vacuum is a gizmo that cleans the floor.

While gizmo often means an unknown object — like a thingamajig — a gizmo is any device that gets a job done. A phone is a gizmo for talking to people. A stove is a gizmo that cooks food. A hammer is a gizmo that pounds in nails. Gizmos are all man-made: a plant or animal can't be a gizmo. If you want to be an inventor, come up with an original gizmo.

Definitions of gizmo
  1. noun
    a small mechanical device or gadget
    synonyms: appliance, contraption, contrivance, convenience, gadget, gismo, widget
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    appliances collectively
    an appliance that allows an object (such as a ship's compass) to remain horizontal even as its support tips
    a contrivance for injecting (e.g., water into the boiler of a steam engine or particles into an accelerator etc.)
    mod con
    modern convenience; the appliances and conveniences characteristic of a modern house
    type of:
    an instrumentality invented for a particular purpose
  2. noun
    something unspecified whose name is either forgotten or not known
    “there may be some great new gizmo around the corner that you will want to use”
    synonyms: doodad, doohickey, doojigger, gimmick, gismo, gubbins, thingamabob, thingamajig, thingmabob, thingmajig, thingumabob, thingumajig, thingummy, whatchamacallit, whatchamacallum, whatsis, widget
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    type of:
    miscellaneous unspecified objects
Word Family
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