Looking for a single word for the term:

"removing unused stuff".


To be used in the following context:

I am to use this word for a program that does some cleaning of useless stuff. But I want to avoid software lingo like erase/delete kind of things as they are already day to day usage for my audience.

I am looking for connotations that make it sound more funny or creative.

So rather than using XYZcleaner or XYZdeleter, something more fancy.

  • 2
    Prune? Clean? Trim? Commented Mar 13, 2015 at 18:44
  • 1
    Prune is also my choice Commented Mar 13, 2015 at 19:29
  • 3
    Any context for this question?
    – Jimi Oke
    Commented Mar 13, 2015 at 19:35
  • 1
    @JimiOke: added context as asked for
    – bhaskarc
    Commented Mar 13, 2015 at 19:47
  • 1
    I favour eBay. Commented Mar 14, 2015 at 0:44

5 Answers 5



As noted in the comments, "prune" works. But since it refers mainly to gardening, it conveys a sense of trimming back useful things that are overgrown.

I think this conveys clearing out things that aren't useful and getting down to basic essentials.



I would suggest one very universal word eliminate. Anyway, there could be many possibilities since stuff can stand for several meanings. For example, if the stuff is information, then erase/delete.

  • here my stuff is information but I want to stay away from technical terms like erase/delete as they are in daily use for my audience and doesn't sound exciting. Woudn't 'eliminate' means complete destruction rather than destruction of unused stuff ? thnks
    – bhaskarc
    Commented Mar 13, 2015 at 18:56

'declutter' is frequently used if it is getting unnecessary stuff out of your space.


Since the stuff is information. You can "drop/dismiss" some (unused) information and keep (retain) others.


Filter could be used in a figurative sense.

Filter (verb):

: to pass (something, such as a gas or liquid) through a filter to remove something unwanted

: to remove (something unwanted) by using a filter


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