keep tabs on


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Related to keep tabs on: knuckle under, ring hollow, run ragged, rough it

tab 1

 (tăb)
n.
1. A projection, flap, or short strip attached to an object to facilitate opening, handling, or identification.
2. A small, usually decorative flap or tongue on a garment.
3. A small auxiliary airfoil that is attached to a larger one and that helps stabilize an aircraft.
4. A pull-tab.
tr.v. tabbed, tab·bing, tabs
To supply with a tab or tabs.

[Origin unknown.]

tab 2

 (tăb)
n.
1. Informal
a. A bill or check, such as one for a meal in a restaurant.
b. Cost; price: The tab for upgrading the computers would be high.
2. A tabulator on a typewriter.
3. Computers
a. A key on a computer keyboard that, when pressed, inserts a special ASCII character used for formatting text, as in indenting a line or block of text.
b. This special ASCII character.
intr.v. tabbed, tab·bing, tabs
To press the tab on a typewriter or computer keyboard: Tab over to the next column.
Idiom:
keep tabs on Informal
To observe carefully over time: Let's keep tabs on expenditures.

[Short for tablet or tabulation. Sense 2, short for tabulator.]

tab 3

 (tăb) Informal
n.
A tabloid.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Verb1.keep tabs on - keep a record on or watch attentively; "The government keeps tabs on the dissidents"
keep an eye on, watch over, watch, observe, follow - follow with the eyes or the mind; "Keep an eye on the baby, please!"; "The world is watching Sarajevo"; "She followed the men with the binoculars"
References in periodicals archive ?
It would be impossible for even a team of people glued to TV sets around the world, let alone one person, to keep tabs on what is being said in the broadcast arena.
But bigger companies may need an industrial-strength monitoring service, because there is just no way for someone to manually keep tabs on the growing conversations out there.