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queue, cue, cue up

A lineup composed of people, telephone calls, documents, or computer commands waiting for attention or processing is called a queue.

  • The Air Canada reservations agent sighed as she looked at the long queue.
  • When everyone in the office sends jobs to the printer, the document queue gets very long.

The verb forms include queues, queued and queuing (sometimes queueing) and are often followed by the preposition up.

  • That computer network handles a lot of traffic and needs a message-queuing system.
  • The tourists were impressed by the way Londoners queued (or queued up) for buses.

In theatre and broadcasting, cue or cue up means to give a signal or cue to begin.

  • The reporter has almost finished her story. Cue (or Cue up) the commercials.
  • When André missed his cue, the other actors had to improvise.