ping (n.)

1835, imitative of the sound of a bullet whistling through the air or striking something sharply. Meaning "short, high-pitched electronic pulse" is attested from 1943. As a verb from 1855; in computer sense is from at least 1981, based on earlier use of the word in reference to a submarine sonar pulse, in which it might combine the sound-word and ping-pong (which also is based on sound). Related: Pinged; pinging.

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Definitions of ping from WordNet
ping (v.)
hit with a pinging noise;
The bugs pinged the lamp shade
ping (v.)
sound like a car engine that is firing too early;
the car pinged when I put in low-octane gasoline
Synonyms: pink / knock
ping (v.)
make a short high-pitched sound;
the bullet pinged when they struck the car
ping (v.)
contact, usually in order to remind of something;
I'll ping my accountant--April 15 is nearing
ping (v.)
send a message from one computer to another to check whether it is reachable and active;
ping your machine in the office
ping (n.)
a sharp high-pitched resonant sound (as of a sonar echo or a bullet striking metal);
Ping (n.)
a river in western Thailand; a major tributary of the Chao Phraya;
Synonyms: Ping River