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Last supper copy by unknown artist.jpg


Middle English copie, from Anglo-French, from Medieval Latin copia, from Latin, abundance


b : something considered printable or newsworthy —used without an article <remarks that make good copy — Norman Cousins>
c : text especially of an advertisement
  • 5 : duplicate 1a <a copy of a computer file> <a copy of a gene>


Copying is the duplication of information or an artifact based only on an instance of that information or artifact, and not using the process that originally generated it. With analog forms of information, copying is only possible to a limited degree of accuracy, which depends on the quality of the equipment used and the skill of the operator. There is some inevitable deterioration and accumulation of "noise" (random small changes, not sound) from original to copy; when successive generations of copy are made, this deterioration accumulates with each generation. With digital forms of information, copying is perfect. Copy and paste is frequently used for information a computer user selects and copies to an area he or she wishes. Most high-accuracy copying techniques use the principle that there will be only one type of possible interpretation for each reading of data, and only one possible way to write an interpretation of data.[1]