# sketch vs. draw

#### hhtt

##### Senior Member
Sketch means "(art) to make a sketch of and it is synonym is chalk out." But for this context, "Sketch by hand the curve P(T) by using a few table entries around 900 kPa from Table.

Source: definition of sketch in wordweb and "Introduction to engineering thermodynamics by sonntag/borgnakke" for the context.

Thank you.

• #### suzi br

##### Senior Member
In that context it means draw by hand.
It is years since I did any maths, but sketch was the verb used to mean draw curves on graphs when we did that sort of thing on graph paper.

#### entangledbank

##### Senior Member
'Sketch' doesn't mean "chalk out", though chalking out might be one way of sketching something. 'Sketch' is a kind of 'draw', but not putting much detail in, not bothering to be very exact. You place things where you want them in the picture (a barn here, a cornfield there, crows above), but don't do it carefully. Later you might use the sketch to remind yourself of the thing, so that you can make a better drawing or a complete painting. A sketch of a curve or graph is just enough to show roughly where the minima, maxima, and turning points are, where it cuts the axes, and so on: it doesn't have to be precisely proportioned.

#### hhtt

##### Senior Member
In that context it means draw by hand.
It is years since I did any maths, but sketch was the verb used to mean draw curves on graphs when we did that sort of thing on graph paper.
Then, is saying "sketch in the/by computer" is completely wrong? Can we define it as "to draw roughly." ?

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#### suzi br

##### Senior Member
Then, is saying "sketch in the/by computer" is completely wrong?
I don't know if it is completely wrong. We tend to keep vocabulary for a job even when the technocogy has moved on. Clearly if a computer has the equation the graph will be accurate at all points, compared to a rougher line drawn by hand, which may be inaccurate at some points.

Maybe a maths expert can comment on the vocabulary with regard to using computers rather than graph paper!

#### Andygc

##### Senior Member
I don't think you can refer to a computer program sketching something, but it's perfectly possible for a computer user to make a sketch using a computer drawing program. Your original quotation says nothing about using a computer to sketch a graph. It specifically says "Sketch by hand the curve P(T) ...." which means pencil on paper, not lines on a computer monitor.

The first definition of "to sketch" in Collins (Wordreference) and Oxford online is "to make a rough drawing (of)" which seems better than "to make a sketch of" - which requires you to look for the noun to find that it means "a simply or quickly made drawing or painting, giving the basic features" (ie, a rough drawing).

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