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PUSH vs. POP: Know the Difference

Shumaila Saeed
By Shumaila Saeed || Published on February 21, 2024
In computer science, "PUSH" adds an element to the top of a stack, while "POP" removes the topmost element from the stack.
PUSH vs. POP

Key Differences

In data structures, PUSH refers to the operation of adding an element to the top of a stack, while POP describes removing the topmost element. Both operations modify the stack but in opposite ways.
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Shumaila Saeed
Feb 21, 2024
PUSH adds data, increasing the size of the data structure, whereas POP removes data, decreasing its size. PUSH inserts an element, and POP takes it out.
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Feb 21, 2024
With PUSH, the newest element is added to the end; with POP, the newest element is the first to be removed. This follows the Last In, First Out (LIFO) principle.
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Feb 21, 2024
When using PUSH on a full stack, it results in a 'stack overflow', while using POP on an empty stack leads to a 'stack underflow'.
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Feb 21, 2024
In programming, PUSH is often used to store variables or states, and POP is used to retrieve them, maintaining the order of operations.
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Feb 21, 2024
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Comparison Chart

Basic Function

Adds an element to a stack
Removes the last added element from a stack
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Feb 21, 2024

Effect on Stack Size

Increases the size of the stack
Decreases the size of the stack
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Order of Operation

Adds elements to the top
Removes elements from the top
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Error Condition

Can cause stack overflow if stack is full
Can cause stack underflow if stack is empty
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Use in Algorithms

Often used to store temporary data
Used to retrieve or remove stored data
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PUSH and POP Definitions

PUSH

To exert force on something to move it away
He pushed the door open.
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POP

To open with a sudden burst
She popped the champagne bottle.
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Jan 19, 2024

PUSH

To press a button or switch
She pushed the button to start the machine.
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Jan 19, 2024

POP

To make a short, sharp, explosive sound.
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Jan 18, 2024

PUSH

To promote or advertise
The company is pushing its new product.
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POP

To burst open with a short, sharp, explosive sound.
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Jan 18, 2024

PUSH

To compel or urge forcefully
The coach pushed the players to their limits.
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Jan 19, 2024

POP

To move quickly or unexpectedly; appear abruptly
At last the cottage popped into view.
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Jan 18, 2024

PUSH

To insert data onto a stack in programming
The program pushes a new value onto the stack.
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Jan 19, 2024

POP

To open wide suddenly
The child's eyes popped with astonishment.
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Jan 18, 2024

PUSH

To apply pressure against (something), especially for the purpose of moving it
Pushed the door but couldn't budge it.
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Jan 18, 2024

POP

To have the eustachian tubes open suddenly, equalizing pressure on both sides of the eardrum in response to changes in atmospheric pressure, as in a descending airplane
After I swallowed, my ears popped.
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Jan 18, 2024

PUSH

To move (something) by exerting force against it; thrust or shove
Pushed the crate aside.
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POP

(Baseball) To hit a short high fly ball, especially one that can be caught by an infielder
Popped out to shortstop.
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Jan 18, 2024

PUSH

To exert downward pressure on (a button or keyboard, for example); press.
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POP

To shoot a firearm, such as a pistol.
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PUSH

To force (one's way)
We pushed our way through the crowd.
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POP

To be exciting
A club that really pops at night.
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PUSH

To urge forward or urge insistently; pressure
Pushed him to study harder.
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POP

To be visually striking
A logo that really pops.
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PUSH

To extend or enlarge
Pushed sales into the millions.
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POP

To cause to make a sharp bursting sound.
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PUSH

(Informal) To approach in age
Is pushing 40 and still hasn't settled down.
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POP

To cause to open with a sharp bursting sound
Popped the hood of the car to check the oil.
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PUSH

(Informal) To promote or sell (a product)
The author pushed her latest book by making appearances in bookstores.
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POP

To cause to explode with a sharp bursting sound
Popped the balloon.
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PUSH

(Slang) To sell (a narcotic) illegally
Push drugs.
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POP

To put or thrust suddenly or unexpectedly
"popping a crisp plump shrimp into her mouth" (Kathleen Winsor).
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PUSH

(Sports) To hit (a ball) in the direction toward the dominant hand of the player propelling it, as to the right of a right-handed player.
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POP

To discharge (a firearm).
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PUSH

To exert pressure or force against something
Winds pushing against the sail.
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POP

To fire at; shoot.
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PUSH

To advance despite difficulty or opposition; press forward
The regiment pushed toward the front line.
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POP

To hit or strike
Popped me on the head.
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PUSH

To advocate or recommend something insistently
Pushed for a change in leadership.
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POP

(Baseball) To hit (a ball) high in the air but not far.
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PUSH

To expend great or vigorous effort
Pushed to finish his paper by the deadline.
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POP

To release (a clutch) suddenly.
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PUSH

The act of pushing; a thrust
Gave the door a push.
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POP

To take (drugs), especially orally
"To calm a case of the jitters ... the bride popped Valium" (People).
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PUSH

The act of pressing
With a push of the button.
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POP

To have (a drink)
Popped a few beers after work.
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PUSH

A vigorous or insistent effort toward an end; a drive
A push to reform health care.
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POP

(Slang) To take into legal custody; arrest
"Her friend was visiting and got popped for a DUI while he was driving her car" (Jamie Harrison).
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Jan 18, 2024

PUSH

A provocation to action; a stimulus
Has artistic talent but needs a push to get started.
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POP

A sudden sharp, explosive sound.
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PUSH

(Informal) Persevering energy; enterprise
Doesn't have the push to get the job done.
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POP

A shot with a firearm.
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PUSH

To apply a force to (an object) such that it moves away from the person or thing applying the force.
In his anger he pushed me against the wall and threatened me.
You need to push quite hard to get this door open.
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POP

Chiefly Midwestern US See soft drink. See Note at tonic.
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PUSH

(transitive) To continually attempt to persuade (a person) into a particular course of action.
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POP

(Baseball) A pop fly.
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PUSH

(transitive) To press or urge forward; to drive.
To push an objection too far; to push one's luck
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POP

Father.
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PUSH

(transitive) To continually promote (a point of view, a product for sale, etc.).
Stop pushing the issue — I'm not interested.
They're pushing that perfume again.
There were two men hanging around the school gates today, pushing drugs.
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POP

Popular music.
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PUSH

(intransitive) To continually exert oneself in order to achieve a goal.
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POP

Pop art.
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PUSH

To approach; to come close to.
My old car is pushing 250,000 miles.
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POP

With a popping sound.
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PUSH

(intransitive) To tense the muscles in the abdomen in order to expel its contents.
During childbirth, there are times when the obstetrician advises the woman not to push.
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POP

Abruptly or unexpectedly.
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PUSH

(intransitive) To continue to attempt to persuade a person into a particular course of action.
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POP

Of or for the general public; popular or popularized
Pop culture.
Pop psychology.
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PUSH

To make a higher bid at an auction.
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POP

Of, relating to, or specializing in popular music
A pop singer.
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PUSH

(poker) To make an all-in bet.
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POP

Of or suggestive of pop art
A pop style.
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PUSH

To move (a pawn) directly forward.
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POP

(countable) A loud, sharp sound, as of a cork coming out of a bottle.
Listen to the pop of a champagne cork.
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PUSH

(computing) To add (a data item) to the top of a stack.
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POP

An effervescent or fizzy drink, most frequently nonalcoholic; soda pop.
Lunch was sandwiches and a bottle of pop.
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PUSH

(computing) To publish (an update, etc.) by transmitting it to other computers.
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POP

A bottle, can, or serving of effervescent or fizzy drink, most frequently nonalcoholic; a soda pop.
Go in the store and buy us three pops.
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PUSH

(obsolete) To thrust the points of the horns against; to gore.
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POP

A pop shot: a quick, possibly unaimed, shot with a firearm.
The man with the gun took a pop at the rabbit.
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PUSH

To burst out of its pot, as a bud or shoot.
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POP

A quantity dispensed; a portion; apiece.
They cost 50 pence a pop.
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PUSH

(snooker) To strike the cue ball in such a way that it stays in contact with the cue and object ball at the same time (a foul shot).
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POP

Something that stands out or is distinctive to the mind or senses.
A white dress with a pop of red
A pop of vanilla flavour
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PUSH

A short, directed application of force; an act of pushing.
Give the door a hard push if it sticks.
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POP

(computing) The removal of a data item from the top of a stack.
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PUSH

An act of tensing the muscles of the abdomen in order to expel its contents.
One more push and the baby will be out.
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POP

A bird, the European redwing.
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PUSH

A great effort (to do something).
Some details got lost in the push to get the project done.
Let's give one last push on our advertising campaign.
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POP

(physics) The sixth derivative of the position vector with respect to time (after velocity, acceleration, jerk, jounce, crackle), i.e. the rate of change of crackle.
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PUSH

An attempt to persuade someone into a particular course of action.
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POP

A pistol.
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PUSH

(military) A marching or drill maneuver/manoeuvre performed by moving a formation (especially a company front) forward or toward the audience, usually to accompany a dramatic climax or crescendo in the music.
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Jan 18, 2024

POP

A small, immature peanut, boiled as a snack.
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PUSH

A wager that results in no loss or gain for the bettor as a result of a tie or even score
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POP

(colloquial) freeze pop
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PUSH

(computing) The addition of a data item to the top of a stack.
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POP

A (usually very) loud audience reaction.
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PUSH

The situation where a server sends data to a client without waiting for a request.
Server push; a push technology
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POP

One's father.
My pop used to tell me to do my homework every night.
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PUSH

A particular crowd or throng or people.
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POP

Pop music.
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PUSH

(snooker) A foul shot in which the cue ball is in contact with the cue and the object ball at the same time
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POP

A Russian Orthodox priest; a parson.
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PUSH

A pustule; a pimple.
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POP

(intransitive) To make a pop, or sharp, quick sound.
The muskets popped away on all sides.
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PUSH

A pustule; a pimple.
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POP

(ergative) To burst (something) with a popping sound.
The boy with the pin popped the balloon.
This corn pops well.
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PUSH

A thrust with a pointed instrument, or with the end of a thing.
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POP

To enter, or issue forth, with a quick, sudden movement; to move from place to place suddenly; to dart.
A rabbit popped out of the hole.
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PUSH

Any thrust. pressure, impulse, or force, or force applied; a shove; as, to give the ball the first push.
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POP

To place (something) (somewhere); to move or position (something) with a short movement.
Just pop it in the fridge for now.
He popped his head around the door.
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PUSH

An assault or attack; an effort; an attempt; hence, the time or occasion for action.
Exact reformation is not perfected at the first push.
When it comes to the push, 'tis no more than talk.
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Jan 18, 2024

POP

To make a short trip or visit.
I'm just popping round to the newsagent.
I'll pop by your place later today.
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PUSH

The faculty of overcoming obstacles; aggressive energy; as, he has push, or he has no push.
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POP

(intransitive) To stand out; to be distinctive to the senses.
This colour really pops.
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PUSH

A crowd; a company or clique of associates; a gang.
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POP

(transitive) To hit (something or someone).
He popped me on the nose.
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PUSH

To press against with force; to drive or impel by pressure; to endeavor to drive by steady pressure, without striking; - opposed to draw.
Sidelong had pushed a mountain from his seat.
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POP

To shoot (usually somebody) with a firearm.
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PUSH

To thrust the points of the horns against; to gore.
If the ox shall push a manservant or maidservant, . . . the ox shall be stoned.
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POP

To ejaculate; to orgasm.
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PUSH

To press or urge forward; to drive; to push an objection too far.
Ambition pushes the soul to such actions as are apt to procure honor to the actor.
We are pushed for an answer.
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POP

To remove (a data item) from the top of a stack.
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PUSH

To bear hard upon; to perplex; to embarrass.
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POP

To give birth.
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PUSH

To importune; to press with solicitation; to tease.
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POP

To pawn (something) (to raise money).
I had to pop my watch to see me through until pay-day.
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PUSH

To make a thrust; to shove; as, to push with the horns or with a sword.
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POP

To swallow or consume (especially a tablet of a drug, sometimes extended to other small items such as sweets or candy).
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PUSH

To make an advance, attack, or effort; to be energetic; as, a man must push in order to succeed.
At the time of the end shall the kind of the south push at him and the king of the north shall come against him.
War seemed asleep for nine long years; at lengthBoth sides resolved to push, we tried our strength.
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POP

To perform (a move or stunt) while riding a board or vehicle.
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PUSH

To burst pot, as a bud or shoot.
The rider pushed on at a rapid pace.
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POP

To undergo equalization of pressure when the Eustachian tubes open.
My ears popped as the aeroplane began to ascend.
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PUSH

The act of applying force in order to move something away;
He gave the door a hard push
The pushing is good exercise
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POP

(dance) To perform the popping style of dance.
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PUSH

The force used in pushing;
The push of the water on the walls of the tank
The thrust of the jet engines
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POP

To arrest.
He's on probation. We can pop him right now for gang association.
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PUSH

Enterprising or ambitious drive;
Europeans often laugh at American energy
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POP

Used to represent a loud, sharp sound, as of a cork coming out of a bottle.
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PUSH

An electrical switch operated by pressing a button;
The elevator was operated by push buttons
The push beside the bed operated a buzzer at the desk
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POP

(used attributively in set phrases) Popular.
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PUSH

An effort to advance;
The army made a push toward the sea
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POP

A small, sharp, quick explosive sound or report; as, to go off with a pop.
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PUSH

Move with force,
He pushed the table into a corner
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POP

A nonalcoholic carbonated beverage; - so called because it expels the cork with a pop from the bottle containing it; as, ginger pop; lemon pop, etc.
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PUSH

Press, drive, or impel (someone) to action or completion of an action;
He pushed her to finish her doctorate
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POP

The European redwing.
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PUSH

Make publicity for; try to sell (a product);
The salesman is aggressively pushing the new computer model
The company is heavily advertizing their new laptops
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POP

To make a pop, or sharp, quick sound; as, the muskets popped away on all sides.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

PUSH

Strive and make an effort to reach a goal;
She tugged for years to make a decent living
We have to push a little to make the deadline!
She is driving away at her doctoral thesis
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

To enter, or issue forth, with a quick, sudden movement; to move from place to place suddenly; to dart; - with in, out, upon, off, etc.
He that killed my king . . . Popp'd in between the election and my hopes.
A trick of popping up and down every moment.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

PUSH

Press against forcefully without being able to move;
She pushed against the wall with all her strength
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

To burst open with a pop, when heated over a fire; as, this corn pops well.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

PUSH

Approach a certain age or speed;
She is pushing fifty
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

To thrust or push suddenly; to offer suddenly; to bring suddenly and unexpectedly to notice; as, to pop one's head in at the door.
He popped a paper into his hand.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

PUSH

Exert oneself continuously, vigorously, or obtrusively to gain an end or engage in a crusade for a certain cause or person; be an advocate for;
The liberal party pushed for reforms
She is crusading for women's rights
The Dean is pushing for his favorite candidate
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

To cause to pop; to cause to burst open by heat, as grains of Indian corn; as, to pop corn or chestnuts.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

PUSH

Sell or promote the sale of (illegal goods such as drugs);
The guy hanging around the school is pushing drugs
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

To eat or swallow; - of food, especially snacks, in small pieces; as, he popped a whole can of peanuts while watching the movie.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

PUSH

Move strenuously and with effort;
The crowd pushed forward
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

Like a pop; suddenly; unexpectedly.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

PUSH

Make strenuous pushing movements during birth to expel the baby;
`Now push hard,' said the doctor to the woman
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

An informal term for a father; probably derived from baby talk
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

A sweet drink containing carbonated water and flavoring;
In New England they call sodas tonics
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

A sharp explosive sound as from a gunshot or drawing a cork
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

Music of general appeal to teenagers; a bland watered-down version of rock'n'roll with more rhythm and harmony and an emphasis on romantic love
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

Bulge outward;
His eyes popped
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

Hit a pop-fly;
He popped out to shortstop
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

Make a sharp explosive noise;
The cork of the champagne bottle popped
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

Fire a weapon with a loud explosive noise;
The soldiers were popping
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

Cause to make a sharp explosive sound;
He popped the champagne bottle
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

Appear suddenly or unexpectedly;
The farm popped into view as we turned the corner
He suddenly popped up out of nowhere
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

Put or thrust suddenly and forcefully;
Pop the pizza into the microwave oven
He popped the petit-four into his mouth
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

Release suddenly;
Pop the clutch
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

Hit or strike;
He popped me on the head
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

Drink down entirely;
He downed three martinis before dinner
She killed a bottle of brandy that night
They popped a few beer after work
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

Take drugs, especially orally;
The man charged with murder popped a valium to calm his nerves
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

Cause to burst with a lound, explosive sound;
The child popped the balloon
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

Burst open with a sharp, explosive sound;
The balloon popped
This popcorn pops quickly in the microwave oven
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

(of music or art) new and of general appeal (especially among young people)
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

Like a pop or with a pop;
Everything went pop
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 18, 2024

POP

To make a short, sharp, explosive sound
The balloon will pop if you inflate it too much.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 19, 2024

POP

To appear suddenly or unexpectedly
He popped into the office for a quick visit.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 19, 2024

POP

To shoot or hit something with a sharp sound
He popped the target with precision.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 19, 2024

POP

To remove the top element from a stack in programming
The function pops the top value from the stack.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 19, 2024

Repeatedly Asked Queries

What happens when you POP an element?

When you POP, the topmost element of the stack is removed.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 21, 2024

Is PUSH used in everyday language?

Yes, PUSH is commonly used to mean applying pressure to move something away.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 21, 2024

What does PUSH mean in programming?

PUSH refers to adding an element to the top of a stack.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 21, 2024

What is 'stack underflow' in relation to POP?

'Stack underflow' happens when you try to POP from an empty stack.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 21, 2024

Can PUSH be used in marketing?

Yes, it can refer to promoting or advertising a product.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 21, 2024

Can POP refer to a sound?

Yes, POP often describes a short, sharp, explosive sound.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 21, 2024

What's a common error with PUSH in programming?

A common error is 'stack overflow', which occurs if the stack is full.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 21, 2024

Does POP increase the size of a stack?

No, POP decreases the size by removing the top element.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 21, 2024

Is PUSH only a computer term?

No, it's used in various contexts, not just computing.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 21, 2024

In what order does PUSH add elements?

PUSH adds elements to the end or top of the structure.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 21, 2024

Is POP always about sound?

No, it can also refer to removing elements in programming.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 21, 2024

What's an everyday use of PUSH?

An everyday use is pushing a door to open it.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 21, 2024

How does PUSH affect a data structure's size?

PUSH increases the size of the data structure.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 21, 2024

Can POP be used in casual conversation?

Yes, like saying someone popped in for a visit.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 21, 2024

What error might you encounter with POP in an empty stack?

You would encounter a 'stack underflow' error.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 21, 2024

How is PUSH related to a stack overflow?

Pushing too many elements onto a full stack causes a stack overflow.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 21, 2024

What is a real-world example of POP?

A real-world example is a cork popping from a champagne bottle.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 21, 2024

How does POP affect the order of elements?

POP removes the last element added, following LIFO.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 21, 2024

Does POP have a culinary meaning?

Yes, it can refer to popping corn in a pan.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 21, 2024

Can PUSH be a physical action?

Yes, like pushing a car that's broken down.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 21, 2024

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About Author
Shumaila Saeed
Written by
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed, an expert content creator with 6 years of experience, specializes in distilling complex topics into easily digestible comparisons, shining a light on the nuances that both inform and educate readers with clarity and accuracy.

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