May 01, 2009melissa - Word of the Day Technical
The name of a virus distributed as an e-mail attachment. When opened, it disables numerous safeguards in Microsoft Word (a word processor) and causes Microsoft Outlook (an e-mail program) to send the virus to the first fifty people in each of the user's address books. Melissa wreaked havoc one day in March of 1999, when it forced Microsoft to shut down all of its incoming e-mail servers.matrix - Word of the Day Jargon
A term coined by author William Gibson in his novel Neuromancer, it refers to a vast computer network or growing mass of interconnected networks.RON - Word of the Day Business
May 02, 2009bozon - Word of the Day Jargon
Slang for the smallest, most minute unit of bogusness, it also refers to stupidity. For example, "Don't go to him for answers, he's got the highest bozon count in the company."failure - Word of the Day Jargon
In the industry, failure is when a business becomes unsuccessful, ceases to function, or declares chapter 11. Entrepreneurs do not look at failure as totally negative. Instead, when they hear your first business failed, they'll say, "Welcome to the club." Many successful business people will tell you they've gone through dozens of failures before getting it right. So then, failure is not always lack of success, it is when you know something is wrong but you choose to do it anyway. Take petstore.com for example, where did they fail in that, in listening to experts and following a dream? Unless it is based on poor management or the like, a business failure is better thought of as a life lesson.
May 03, 2009hands-on - Word of the Day Business
A management attitude that favors remaining involved on a project only to keep in touch with its progress. It is not the opposite of hands-off. It describes a manager who still does a little grunt work, such as coding, for example, to "keep in touch with reality." In fact, many hands-on managers have a hands-off attitude, which makes for an ideal, independent working environment.paste bomb - Word of the Day Jargon
A random or nonsequiturial piece of data that is cut from one's hard drive and pasted into an online conversation. Meant to entertain, infuriate, and befuddle online conversants. Sci-fi author and Net spider Bruce Sterling is a notorious paste bomber.GRAS - Acronym of the Day
Generally Recognized As Safe
May 04, 2009mailbot - Word of the Day Business
An e-mail server that automatically responds to requests for information.deactivation - Word of the Day Jargon
The process of removing a domain name from the zone files of the top-level domains. When a domain name is deactivated, the Domain Name System (DNS) will no longer have the information needed to resolve the domain name to its corresponding Internet Protocol number (IP number), effectively disabling that domain name as a tool for locating the related Web sites. InterNIC refers to this status as being "on hold," though, because the domain name record remains in InterNIC's domain name database.NVM - Acronym of the Day
May 05, 2009selfware - Word of the Day Business
Slang for a subscription-based model of using software, as opposed to buying a program off-the-shelf.tagging - Word of the Day Jargon
A grassroots phenomenon whereby users label Web sites with descriptive tags, building a network of knowledge dubbed folksonomy -- a taxonomy of knowledge organized by ordinary folk. Yahoo! was quick to spot this trend, as are other Web sites linked to below.
The term "tag" has evolved to refer to content that identifies a particular image or file, to be used in conjunction with other images or files of the same tag. On some Web sites, communities have formed around particular tags, for example: the tag "memorymaps" refers to digital scrapbooks that make use of the ability to annotate photographs with boxes (which display pop-up captions when the mouse pointer rolls over them). Starting with a satellite image of a city or town, users attach captions to places of particular significance, for example old school friends' houses or high school hangouts. Other communities sprinkle maps with restaurants, cinemas, and other places of interest. Hey, people are into it!
Basically it is an intelligent method and tool for browsing and sharing the best Web sites.processor - Word of the Day Technical
In computer-speak, this term is used interchangeably with CPU. It is frequently described as the brain of a computer because the processor controls the central processing of data in personal computers (PCs), servers, workstations, and other devices.
Until 2005, most consumer computers had a single processor. Now it's common to find them with so-called dual cores, which means two processors packaged into one chip. Two cores won't make your word-processing or email go any faster, but they do potentially give you more horsepower for heavy-duty tasks like gaming or video editing (provided you have the software that sends some work to each core). Intel first called their dual-core chip the "Core Duo;" now there's a second-generation known as the "Core 2 Duo." There are also single-core Intel processors called "Core Solo." For laptops, see PC Card.
May 06, 2009mips - Word of the Day Technicalvampire time - Word of the Day Jargon
A schedule where one sleeps all day and haunts clubs and coffee houses at night. Refers to writers, artists, slackers, club kids, and other bohemian types.
May 07, 2009channel conflict - Word of the Day Business
Refers to the situation in which a producer or manufacturer bypasses its normal distribution channel (which may include resellers, distributors, agents, and retailers) to sell directly to consumers, often on the Web.wireless access - Word of the Day Technicaldata shadow - Word of the Day Jargon
Every time you use a credit card, send an e-mail, browse the Web, or use a cell phone, small traces of digital information are left behind. This is referred to as a "data shadow".
May 08, 2009wallpaper - Word of the Day Technical
On desktop computers, wallpaper is the background pattern or picture against which the menus, icons, active windows, and other elements are displayed and moved around on the screen. A wallpaper image can be in a JPG or a GIF file format. Wallpaper is commonly used in Microsoft Windows, Macintosh OS, Linux, and in other operating systems as well. Each operating system provides several "pre-installed" wallpaper images for users to choose from. You can also choose to download and install "third-party" wallpapers or use an image of your own instead.
Typically, a wallpaper image may be centered, stretched, or tiled. When an image is centered, it is placed in the middle of the screen and is surrounded by a solid color. When an image is stretched, it is stretched to cover all of the desktop. Only certain images can be stretched otherwise they look distorted. An image that is tiled is placed on the desktop and repeated several times, much like tiles are placed on a floor. "Tiling" is commonly used for patterns instead of photos because a pattern is one square image that repeats itself across and down the screen, effectively forming a single image.the net - Word of the Day Jargon
A nickname for the Internet, the most revolutionary communications medium to date.MBRFN - Acronym of the Day
Must Be Real F***ing Nice
May 09, 2009rain fade - Word of the Day Technical
A phenomenon with satellite communication systems, it refers to the temporary loss of a satellite signal due to the inability of the signal to penetrate heavy rainfall.cyberchondria - Word of the Day Jargon
The name for hypochondria resulting from seeing one's symptoms on a medical Web site. "Cyberchondria" is a colloquial term to describe the behavior of individuals who use the Internet to gather information on health or healthcare, for themselves or people in their care. It is also generally described as "online concern about health."
May 10, 2009homestead - Word of the Day Jargonspam filter - Word of the Day Technical
A program used to detect unsolicited and unwanted e-mail and prevent spam messages from getting into a user's inbox. Like other types of filtering programs, a spam filter looks for certain criteria on which it bases judgments. For example, one method is to set the spam filter to watch for particular words in the subject line of e-mail messages and then exclude these from your inbox. This method is not very effective, however, because it often omits perfectly legitimate messages (false positives) and still lets actual spam come through. Another method which is more sophisticated is using Bayesian filters (or other heuristic filters) in an attempt to identify spam through word frequency or suspicious word patterns.desktop search - Word of the Day Jargon
In response to the popularity of online search, Google launched a "desktop search" toolbar that indexes the content on a user's local hard disk and then blends Web search results with local user information (such as e-mail, text documents and other files).
May 11, 2009blatherer - Word of the Day JargonECML - Word of the Day Technical
A set of standards for Web merchants that allows an e-wallet to fill in automatically the shipping address, billing address, and credit card information on any ECML-compliant Web site. This technology never emerged as the standard in this space, instead, PayPal took over as the dominating technology in online payment processes.losing your virginity - Word of the Day BusinessMYL - Acronym of the Day
Mind Your Language
May 12, 2009JAR file - Word of the Day Technical
Contains the class, image, and sound files for a Java applet, gathered into a single file and compressed for faster downloading to a Web browser.growing the business - Word of the Day Business
Originally used in the farming business to mean the addition of fertilizer, then water to make your crops grow. This term now is being used in the business world, meaning to increase your revenue and expand your operations to make your business grow.
May 13, 2009third-generation - Word of the Day Business
Similar to first-generation and second-generation, this is an adjective used to describe in generalized terms the next-generation of technology. For example, GPRS is a step toward third-generation (3G) mobile phone services and ADC (Advanced Digital Cellular) is also known as 3G technology.technocowboy - Word of the Day Jargon
Those in the high-tech industry who like to buck the system, often coming up with a better system than the established method. execs complain about IT talent shortages and high turnover in Silicon Valley, but that's because most people who work in the industry don't like to be stifled by bureaucracy or get frustrated by the inability of a big company to make quick decisions.
What's a technocowboy to do? Start-up an incubator with a few portfolio companies and encourage them to poach talent from within the group; if people can switch jobs without affecting their pay scale or benefits, or stay at the same company but take on different roles, they say why not. BTW: A technocowboy is not the same as a cappuccino cowboy, at all.palmtop - Word of the Day Technical
The generic name for a PC that fits in the palm of a user's hand. Palmtops can connect to a desktop or a laptop to exchange information; this is called "synchronizing," and it is done with a hardware device called a "cradle" (or via an infrared port). Early palmtops served as high-tech message pads and personal telephone books, such as the Palm Pilot. They evolved to include handwriting recognition software (graffiti) that made them easier to use than earlier versions. Palmtops continued to morph and began to include word processing programs, games, and eventually modems and/or wireless connections for sending and receiving e-mail and browsing the Web. It is now commonly called a handheld (as in "a handheld device"), but in Europe and parts of Asia, where it has converged with cell phone technology to become an all-around mobile PDA, it is known as a handy. Some palmtops now have built-in keyboards; Microsoft released a product known as the Pocket PC and there are several competing products, such as the Visor by Handspring and newer versions of the Palm Pilot, that make use of the Palm OS or Windows CE.
May 14, 2009webster - Word of the Day Jargon
A denizen of the World Wide Web.text-to-speech - Word of the Day Jargon
Describes a software program that prompts a computer-generated voice to recite the words in a computer file.
May 15, 2009audio mining - Word of the Day Business
Refers to using speech recognition technology that pulls data from recordings.NIH - Acronym of the Day
Not Invented Here
May 16, 2009phreak - Word of the Day Jargonstring - Word of the Day Technicalad overlay - Word of the Day Business
When Internet companies questioned the effectiveness of video pre-roll, mid-roll, and post-roll ads, they came up with a new advertising concept: the ad overlay. An "ad overlay" is when certain videos contain a small, semi-transparent overlay across the bottom of the screen, similar to what you often see during TV shows. The ads show up 15 seconds into the videos and only last for 10 seconds.
Ad overlays can be a scroll, ticker, or watermark image. Viewers can click to close the ads, or they can click on them, at which point they stop the video in the background and open up a "player within the player" (known as in-player messaging) that can include more advertising content. Viewing video ads in this manner are called "in stream" because you are viewing it while it is streaming, as opposed to viewing an ad that appears over the browser. After the viewer is done with the ad, they can close it, and the original video picks up where it left off.
May 17, 2009dedicated line - Word of the Day Technicalcheaper, faster, better - Word of the Day Jargon
May 18, 2009demo monkey - Word of the Day Business
A nickname for a person who gives a really good demo.MSNUW - Acronym of the Day
Mini-Skirt No UnderWearnarco pop - Word of the Day Jargon
Stories, set to music, about drug smugglers from the Mexican badlands, increasingly popular in both Mexico and the American Southwest. Think cross-border gangsta rap.
May 19, 2009fractal - Word of the Day Technical
A word coined in 1975 by Benoit B. Mandlebrot, from the Latin fractus (for "to break"). It is, in the words of one fractal creator, "a shape with the property of self-similarity." A small section of a fractal has the same shape as a larger section, and this similarity appears across a wide range of scales.
It's a visual thing so be sure to click on the links below!TCO - Word of the Day Business
A financial estimate that is designed to help consumers and business managers determine direct and indirect costs related to the purchase of any capital investment. For example, this term can represent how much it will actually cost to own a PC. The estimate will include factors such as the original cost of the computer and software, any upgrades that are made, maintenance, technical support, and training.shopgrifting - Word of the Day Jargon
Slang for the practice of "renting" consumer electronics "gratis" by buying items on credit and returning them under the 30-day, no-questions asked return policy offered at most big box stores.
May 20, 2009brand - Word of the Day Business
A logo, corporate image, or distinct product or service identity that can become firmly rooted in the public's mind. Its purpose is to establish a meaningful, differentiated presence that will attract and retain loyal customers. "Co-branding" refers to a marketing effort or partnership between companies (such as retailers and manufacturers), either online or offline, to join forces and use the best technology or content of each (lending both of their brands to the final product).EUV light - Word of the Day Technical
A method of using shorter wavelengths of light to create smaller circuits. Current technology uses light waves about 240 nanometers long (so-called deep ultraviolet light) to create circuits about 100 nanometers wide (a nanometer is one-billionth of a meter). If scientists succeeded with EUV light, circuits could shrink in width to 10 nanometers, which in turn could make microprocessors 100 times more powerful.cyburban myths - Word of the Day Jargon
A term coined by the EFF's Mike Goodwin to describe media stories about the net that have little basis in fact. Articles linking a surge of "dangerous information" on the net and terrorism would be one example; stories about the rise of cybergangs would be another.
May 21, 2009defect - Word of the Day Jargon
A product anomaly. Examples include such things as omissions and imperfections found during early life-cycle phases and symptoms of faults contained in software that's sufficiently mature for testing or operation. A defect also refers to any kind of issue you want tracked and resolved.digital entertainment - Word of the Day Business
The promise of unlimited access to our favorite movies, TV shows, radio programming, and recorded music at the touch of a button-anytime, anywhere-has yet to materialize. New products are personalizing the delivery of audio and video (without the use of a PC, see: narrowband), and instead, elements of the PC (hard drives and Web connections) are being installed in entertainment systems. While video on the Internet is still practical only for those with a high-speed connection (such as a cable modem or DSL), anyone with a 56K modem can enjoy music, spoken-word programming, and text online. The list of digital entertainment components is growing, including PVRs (Personal Video Recorders), audio storage units, DBS (Direct Broadcast Satellite services), and Web-connected gaming systems.NSA - Acronym of the Day
No Strings Attachedwhole-house opportunity - Word of the Day Jargon
Term used by John Malone (one of the world's richest people) to describe what the combined efforts of AT&T/TCI could offer consumers: "seamless" integration of video, voice, and Internet services.
May 22, 2009wonderware - Word of the Day Jargon
Another name for vaporware.outage - Word of the Day Technical
May 23, 2009organic search results - Word of the Day Technical
Organic listings appear solely because a search engine has deemed it editorially important for them to be included, regardless of payment. Note: Some search engines include paid listings at the top of the organic listings even though these "sponsored links" are paid for.
In a 2004 iProspect report, it states that users click on organic search results more often than they do paid listings:
Google - 72.3% organic, 27.7% Paid ads
All engines - 60.5% organic, 39.5% paid ads
May 24, 2009log - Word of the Day Technical
A file that keeps a record of the activity on a Web site or server. For example, a file that contains the information on how many hits or impressions a Web page is receiving is known as a traffic log.clueful - Word of the Day Jargon
In techie-speak, it means the opposite of clueless. For example, "I'll get you the answer as soon as I can find someone clueful at the hosting company."hands-off - Word of the Day Business
A management attitude that disfavors directly overseeing an employee's every move. For example, a hands-off manager allows people to complete projects "their way" and respects their abilities, knowing that things will get done on schedule if people are left alone to do them. Tasks and time lines are agreed upon, but implementation is up to the worker; hands-off managers may not complain if you get in late, because they realize you have expertise, you're proud of your work, and you are committed to getting your job done. It is the opposite of micromanagement, which is the petty process of overseeing someone's every action.
May 25, 2009shortcut - Word of the Day Technicalstart-up - Word of the Day Business
A nickname for a business that is just getting started. Stories about start-ups abound, and there's even a movie about them, called Start-Up.com.
One particular story goes like this: A start-up found itself holding M&A negotiations with a buyer who just months before tried to drag it down with a lawsuit. Add to this scenario the fact that the adversary-turned-suitor was a $40 billion global giant and the start-up was an $80 million new economy rebel.
Such was the case with Vivendi Universal and MP3.com. Vivendi originally sought $450 million in court because it claimed that MP3.com was letting music fans illegally download and store music by Universal-licensed artists. It extracted a $53.4 million judgment, only to turn around and buy MP3.com for $372 million (plus a variety of other monetary incentives).phonesia - Word of the Day Jargon
The affliction of dialing a phone number and forgetting whom you were calling just as they answer (see also: ohnosecond). "Phonesia" also refers to the inability to remember where in the house you left your mobile phone.
May 26, 2009Bauhaus - Word of the Day Business
One of the most influential schools of design (founded in 1919, in Germany), it is included in NetLingo because its basic tenet has greatly influenced the design of technology: Form follows function.e-document - Word of the Day Technical
A digital document that you can read on a computer screen using widely available free software (such as Adobe Acrobat Reader or Adobe Acrobat eBook Reader).screen-saver face - Word of the Day Jargon
Slang for the look a person gets on their face when they are bored to the point of shutting down their brain.
May 27, 2009EDI - Word of the Day Technical
The transfer of data between two or more companies, using networks and the Internet. EDI is an increasingly important and easy mechanism used by companies to buy, sell, and trade information. A standard format for exchanging business data, EDI saves messages as a string of data elements, each of which represents a singular fact (such as price or product model number). The parties who exchange EDI transmissions are called trading partners. ANSI approved a set of EDI standards known as the "X12 standards."word stuffing - Word of the Day Business
May 28, 2009splash page - Word of the Day Jargon
An introductory first page or front page that you see on some Web sites, it usually contains a click-through logo or message or a fancy Flash presentation with some kind of announcement. The main content and navigation of the site reside "behind" this page (on the homepage or welcome page).
Previously thought of as superfluous, the use of splash pages may see a big return for the following reason: it used to be that search engines would classify and retrieve Web sites based primarily on meta-tags, but now each search engine has it's own set of criteria if you want to try and get your site listed near the top. Simply inserting "help, Internet terms, online jargon" in the header doesn't cut it anymore. What WILL work is the use of a splash page or "doorway page" that complies with EACH search engine's criteria, therefore, if you want to target top listings in 10 search engines for 10 keywords, you'll need to create a few splash pages. The only time the user will see these pages is when they click on your link from the particular search engine. It has to do with writing a paragraph of text about 100-120 words with the keyword 8-10 times in the paragraph and a headline with the keyword. This way the pages are optimized for each keyword for each search engine. We recommend paying a search engine consultant to do it for you (see: SEO).show - Word of the Day Business
Short for "trade show," it is a convention where products are exhibited.flash memory - Word of the Day Technical
A kind of storage for computers, camera memory cards, and other devices that does not include a traditional hard drive. Because there are no moving parts, flash storage is seen as more durable than traditional hard drives. IPods, other MP3 players and key chain USB "thumb drives" all use flash memory and more laptops are being made with flash memory as storage.
May 29, 2009generation e - Word of the Day Business
Note: The "e" is always lowercase and refers to "electronic."render - Word of the Day Jargon
To depict something. For example, an HTML author creatively renders text and graphics on a Web page into columns and rows, and a browser automatically renders the Web page by interpreting the HTML code. In graphics, rendering is the conversion of an outline drawing into a fully formed, 3-D image (which often takes a great deal of time to complete).
Common language usage includes, "That project was such hard work, it rendered me useless for the whole weekend." A "render farm" is slang for the graphic arts division of a company, or for the actual room in which a bunch of graphic artists work their magic.torch mode - Word of the Day Jargon
Slang for when televisions and computer monitors are set very bright, or very blue, at the factory, often to mask inferior quality.
May 30, 2009dumb terminal - Word of the Day Technical
A terminal that doesn’t contain an internal microprocessor. It responds to simple control codes, and usually displays only characters and numerals.granular or granularity - Word of the Day Jargon
In business terms, this describes the fine details, after you drill down to get to the nitty gritty.
For example, "The price of opt-in lists is going up, but apparently there's good reason for it, due to the high degree of granularity available in these lists." In surfer-speak, it means awesome, as in "Totally tubular, dude."data storm - Word of the Day Jargon
A phrase to describe the sudden incident that uncontrollably grows with exponentially larger amounts of news coverage in complete disproportion to its original newsworthiness. For example, when a Florida University student was Tasered, it resulted in a "data storm" (see example below).
Originally an obscure piece of Internet jargon that's occasionally used by cybrarians, computer techies and other IT professionals, the technical data storm is most commonly caused by a defective card or cable that starts wildly sending out bad packets of data. Other parts of the network respond to the bad packets, causing yet more parts to respond and so on, until the whole system is either responding to the packets or responding to the responses.
The media version of a data storm consists of several stages as well, as the Florida Tasering incident reveals. According to the Prince George Citizen newspaper in British Columbia, this data storm "started in typically banal fashion -- Internet poser Andrew Meyer tried to go Mr. Smith Goes to Washington on Senator John Kerry during a forum. As he was ranting about the 2004 elections and the Skull and Bones Society, campus police attempted to remove him from the auditorium and, in the process of subduing him, Tasered him.
"Multiple video cameras captured Meyer's Tasering. A quick Hot Sync got the footage on YouTube -- spawning millions of hits and threads until the incident became so big it was impossible for evil, conniving mainstream media to ignore.
"Being the cynical, self-centered beast that it is, the mainstream media never really quite knows what to do with "net babble." It needs to legitimize the story -- convert it from mere traffic into sanctified news -- so it tried to take a sorry mess of a round peg and ram it into every square hole it could find. Suddenly it wasn't not about the Tasering of some loud mouth but "issues" -- free speech, police tactics, the Democratic Party, left-wing hypocrisy and political apathy among today's students -- to the point where Meyer is some latter-day Tom Paine and the campus police Brownshirts one step away from burning the Reichstag.
"You can see the progression -- calm grows to a squall in the blogosphere, which turns into a full-fledged data storm in the mainstream.The data storm hit the late-night comedy circuit, which, in this case, rapidly dissipated it. It's a frightening thought that North America's last-line source of sober analysis and reason is the likes of the Daily Show, but, hey, it works. Jon Stewart stamped out the madness with something along the lines of: "Today, police brutality collided with college student ouchebaggery ... There are no winners here."
"Debunked and its energy spent, the data storm swirled out of the mainstream and back into the confines of the blogosphere. All in all, pretty harmless stuff -- unless you happen to be Meyer, who spent a night in jail and may be charged a first-degree felony and a second-degree misdemeanor. It's also pretty bad for the campus police because two of the officers were placed on administrative leave by the university, pending review of the case.
"Both disproportionate responses to a disproportionate story. But that's the thing about the data storm -- it's entertaining to watch unless you happen to be caught in one."
May 31, 2009access control - Word of the Day Jargonfreshness factor - Word of the Day Jargon
An online business measurement that takes the average content refresh rate (how many times your Web site is updated) and divides it by the average visit frequency rate (how often people come to your site). A freshness factor of less than 1 means that users are seeing stale content, since they visit more often than you change your content. A freshness factor greater than 1.5 means your content changes more often than users come to see it, and that equals wasted resources.nooksurfer - Word of the Day Jargon
Someone who frequents only one or two newsgroups, BBS topics, or logs on just to answer e-mail, never daring to venture out into the big waters of the Net.