operate-v; 3 Senses

Sense Number 1: function, carry on, or work in a particular way

NOTE: Intransitive. The subject (NP1) is the machine/thing/organization that is functioning. Syntax Includes: NP1 OPERATE PP NP1 OPERATE ADVP

The old flour mill still operates under water power.
I love the way her mind operates.
Exercise makes the heart operate more efficiently.
The big gears on that machine don't seem to be operating.
Exchange rates are currently operating to the advantage of exporters.
Changes are being introduced to make the department operate more efficiently.
Until 1973, the United States military operated under a draft system.
Bands of pirates were still operating at the turn of the century.
Private enterprises were allowed to operate only in one district.

VerbNet: other_cos-45.4
FrameNet: Being_in_operation
PropBank: operate.01,other_cos-45.4
WordNet 3.0 Sense Numbers: 2, 4, 5

Sense Number 2: maneuver or run something

NOTE: Transitive. The direct object (NP2) is the machine/thing/organization being run by the subject (NP1). Syntax Is: NP1[agent] OPERATE NP2

He operated the controls with skill and precision.
She is operating the Asian office of that newspaper.
They hoped the plantation would be operated for another year.
For several years she operated a dating agency from her basement flat.

VerbNet: other_cos-45.4
FrameNet: Operating_a_system,Using
PropBank: operate.01
WordNet 3.0 Sense Numbers: 1, 3, 6

Sense Number 3: perform a surgery

They told him they couldn't operate on his tumor.

VerbNet: NM
FrameNet: NM
PropBank: operate.01
WordNet 3.0 Sense Numbers: 7