November 01, 2011broadcast storm - Word of the Day TechnicalValley - Word of the Day Jargon
Most generally, when you hear someone talk about "the Valley" it is no longer San Fernando Valley near L.A., but rather it refers to Silicon Valley. On a local level, "the Valley" can refer to the nearest Siliconia center in that area (for example, "Philicon Valley").9 - Acronym of the Day
Parent is watchingBarney page - Word of the Day Jargon
Slang for a Web page designed to capitalize on a current trend. For example, "Have you seen the new O.J. Simpson Barney page?"
November 02, 2011April 14, 2000 - Word of the Day Business
The day the Nasdaq crashed, which incidentally, was on the anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic.
Friday, the 14th of April 2000, signaled the end of a remarkable speculative high-tech bubble starting in spring 1997. The closing of the Nasdaq at 3321 corresponded to a total loss of over 35% since its all-time high of 5133 on the 10th of March 2000.clippy - Word of the Day Technical
The annoying little help assistant in Windows software, resembling a paper clip with eyes.GFN - Acronym of the Day
Gone For Nowsloppy clicker - Word of the Day Jargon
Someone who always manages to move screen icons whenever he or she clicks on them.
November 03, 2011computer illiterate - Word of the Day Jargon
People who claim they know nothing about computers or who have actually never used a computer are said to be computer illiterate.ad exchange - Word of the Day Business
A company that brokers online advertising by bringing Web publishers and advertising buyers together on a Web site where they can participate in auctions for ad space. Set up in a Nasdaq-like exchange for the buying and selling of digital advertisements, an ad exchange is a marketplace where publishers and advertisers can find and execute advertising transactions (similar to what happens on a stock exchange).
An ad network also extends to text link ads where participating sites display text ads in exchange for credits which are then converted (using a predetermined exchange rate) into ads to be displayed on other sites.
November 04, 2011task bar - Word of the Day Technical
On Windows machines, this is the default bar, or border, at the bottom of your screen. It shows the Start button, the list of applications currently running, the programs that run behind-the-screens, shortcuts, and the time and date.cyber noir - Word of the Day Jargon
Used to describe dark, trippy, weird "cyber" films and shows like Wild Palms, Tank Girl, and VR.5.crowdfunding - Word of the Day Business
A method in which businesses raise money by accumulating small investments from many people online. It is considered a social networking approach to fundraising, which works well for philanthropic sites.
November 05, 2011TK - Acronym of the Day
To Comeblanding - Word of the Day Jargon
A branding plan that eliminates any uniqueness in a corporate identity, leaving the end result looking, well, bland.sidejack - Word of the Day Jargon
The name given to a method by which your online personal data is hacked and exposed. Because some Wi-Fi networks are unsecure, "sidejacking" works like this: When you login to a secure Web site or browse the Web on an unsecured Wi-Fi network, the fact is everything from the contents of your e-mail to who your friends and acquaintances are, could be easily exposed by hackers.
Even though some sites, such as Gmail, offer secure, SSL-based login pages, things aren't as secure after you login. Unlike many bank Web sites that offer a secure browsing experience for the entire duration of the session, most sites dump the user right back out into unsecured territory after logging in, thus exposing their personal data to anyone who wants to get at it.
The solution is to stick to secured Wi-Fi networks that you know and trust (such as your home network that would not have any strangers on it running packet sniffers). But when you do need to use public access points, avoid accessing Web pages that might transmit personal information. For those of you who want to be extremely careful, you should never use a Wi-Fi hotspot unless you are using VPN (virtual private networking) or SSL (secure sockets layer) to access your accounts.typosquatting - Word of the Day Jargon
The act of parking (or registering) domain names that are misspelled in order to cash in on errant key strokes.
November 06, 2011tilde or ~ - Word of the Day Jargon
This scribbly horizontal line has come to signify an individual user's Web site when housed on the server of an ISP. In real terms the tilde stands for a path which leads to that person's Web site on the server it is being kept. For example, http://www.best.com/~erinj - says that erinj is a best.com user and that her homepage is on best.com's server. When you look at the server you will notice that erinj's Web site is really located on the path: www.best.com/www/users/erinj , therefore the tilde is used to bypass the /www/users directories to make the URL or "Web address" a little shorter and easier to remember. The tilde character is on the top line of your keyboard to the far left.proof of failure - Word of the Day Jargon
A project that's intentionally sabotaged in order to make way for the approval of a different project, as in "The data-warehouse project was a POF with SQL so the data group could implement Oracle instead."Ethical Hacker - Word of the Day Business
The dream job for a generation of hackers: A company paying you to break into its network. By simulating attacks from the net or from an internal source, ethical hackers locate weak spots in a company's network. Then they work with clients to prioritize which are the most serious threats, and suggest solutions.
Sample salary: $60,000-$140,000.
November 07, 2011social ads - Word of the Day Business
The newest form of online advertising, "social ads" are small, banner-like ads tied to social networking users' activities and placed on their profile pages. For example on Facebook, members use mini-feeds and news feeds to keep up with the activites of their friends. So, for example, a friend of "Erin" might receive an update in their news feed that she just bought an iPhone, and include Erin's photo as well as a small Apple ad with an image of an iPhone and a link to the Apple site. Social ads are the result of a combination of social action and content, and it spreads virally.
Marketers can target social ads according to more than a dozen demographic and behavioral criteria--including country, age, gender, political views, movies, and relationship status. Ads are typically sold via auction on a CPC and CPM basis.grass station - Word of the Day Jargon
A pun on "gas station" this term refers to a theoretical fill-up spot in the not-too-distant future; it reflects America's growing love affair with hybrid cars and vegetable-based fuels, including ethanol and biomass fuels, some of which are distilled from grass.open social - Word of the Day Technical
A broad term that describes how widgets and Web apps (also known as mini-websites) can be shared and interacted with amongst existing online communities and social networking sites. Basically social networks and other websites (also known as platforms or containers) can let companies extend their website experience to existing communities on popular social networks using mini-applications.
There are several reasons why open social is so alluring for Web companies:
- Web marketing is no longer limited to a corporate Web site.
- There is efficiency in development, meaning there's standardization in the code use (APIs) so if you develop an application for OpenSocial, it should be easily re-used on all the social networks that are particiating.
- You can harness existing communities and therefore the need to build an audience isn't as crucial.
- The open standards help in the long term, meaning the standards and development languages are commonly known and not proprietary so it reduces the chance of vendor lock in.
- Your existing applications become social, in other words, your standalone applications can now be shared with communities.
Open social systems are yet to be proven and there are many inherent challenges, such as open data risks, inconsistencies, and cultural differences. Nonetheless, Silicon Valley is jumping on the open social bandwagon as part of a later Web 2.0 development. Film at 11.
November 08, 2011communications software - Word of the Day Technical
Also referred to as telecommunications software, it is software that enables one computer to connect with another, across telephone lines (via modems), to share information. Communications software transmits instructions to your modem and directs it to make connections, transfer files, and carry out other procedures. An operating system such as Windows 95 has communications software built into it, but it must be configured for using a modem and connecting to an ISP.Sand Hill Road - Word of the Day Jargon
A west coast version of Wall Street. It is the long road between Highways 101 and 280 in Silicon Valley that is home to a high percentage of VC firms, Internet startups, research centers, as well as Stanford University.roadcasting - Word of the Day Jargon
A play on the term broadcasting, it is a streaming network that, if realized, would allow motorists to broadcast in-car, digital music libraries and podcasts to other vehicles within a 30-mile radius.
November 09, 2011FTL - Acronym of the Day
Faster Than Lightbats - Word of the Day Technical
Battery-powered, ultrasonic transmitters. Small enough for a key chain or a belt, they're worn by people or placed inside objects. They broadcast a 48-bit pulse to receivers that are embedded in ceilings.
Here's how they work: By using the speed of sound, the receivers compare the transmitter's arrival time at three or more locations and calculate the wearer's precise position. A computer then uses this location information to create zones of "usage" and "availability" around objects and people. For example, if a person's zone overlaps an object's zone, the person becomes the temporary "owner" of that device (whether it is a workstation or digital camera). So, there is no need to log on, and whatever you create using that device (such as a document or a picture) is automatically stored on a server in your personal file. Far out. About 800 bats are in use at the AT&T Lab in Cambridge, England.pre-roll - Word of the Day Business
The name of an online video commercial that appears prior to an online video, it is typically :10 - :15 seconds in length. Once you click on certain online video links, you will be forced to watch a short commercial before the video content. This snippet of online advertising is known as "a pre-roll" or just "pre-roll" (as opposed to a mid-roll or post-roll).
Pre-roll looks the most like traditional TV commercials, and online advertisers claim it is better for three main reasons: 1) It has increased accountability (you are forced to watch it), 2) it targets a more engaged user due to its on-demand format (you clicked on the link to see it), and 3) it has a handy interactive component (you can take an action regarding the ad if you're interested). Some websites let you skip over the commercial spot, but most do not.
Pre-roll makes up a small percentage of the available interactive video inventory, but it is growing more popular due to the fact that online publishers can pretty much guarantee that users will see and hear the pre-roll commercial before the audio stream starts. It is also one of the simplest ways to utilize the Internet for sight, sound and motion.cyberattack - Word of the Day Jargon
The latest of all cyber threats, this form of digital attack is aimed towards businesses and government agencies and is designed to capture sensitive information from key insiders' computers.
Many "cyberattack" crime groups in Eastern Europe and Asia spy on employee PCs that have access to high profile and confidential data, resulting in credit card fraud, access to bank account information, and other valuable data.
Often times cyber attacks are launched through an email attachment that contains a malevolent code, and when opened, installs a tiny program on the victim's PC that will eventually copy the desired sensitive information. These emails may appear innocent, even disguised as an email coming from a business associate, making cyberattacks very difficult to detect.
November 10, 2011LMIRL - Acronym of the Day
Let's Meet In Real Lifedarknet - Word of the Day Technical
A computer network or Internet service that lets users send and receive files and information over the Internet without fear of being monitored or logged. The service allows people to use an untraceable address in the "darknet," where they cannot be personally identified.
A Swedish high-tech company has launched such a service because "the right to exchange information in private is fundamental to the democratic society. Without a safe and convenient way of accessing the Internet anonymously, this right is rendered null and void." The service offers a neutral IP address on top of your existing ISP service through a strongly encrypted VPN connection.IC/OOC - Word of the Day Jargon
Used in MUDs or other online role playing to indicate you are either in or out of character. For example, "OOC: I have to leave soon."
November 11, 2011public key encryption - Word of the Day Technical
An encryption method that uses the concept of a key ring. The key ring has two keys: a public key that is made available to everyone and a private (or secret) key that is known only by the private key holder. The public and private keys are designed to work together. Anyone can use the public key to encrypt data, but only the person with the corresponding private key can decrypt the data; this helps to protect the content of messages. Conversely, anyone can use the public key to decrypt data, but only if it was encrypted with the corresponding private key; this helps to ensure the identity of the person sending the data.furverts - Word of the Day Jargon
The denizens of FurryMUCK and alt.fan.furry, or other people who enjoy emulating anthropomorphs (humanoid animals). Not to be confused with the people who post on alt.sex.bestiality.
November 12, 2011computer simulation - Word of the Day Technical
Software that models the dynamics of a real scenario in order to create a computerized version for learning and training. For example, real-time simulation is used for airline and fighter pilot training. Animated runways and enemy flight forces are recreated in a room called a simulator. A simulator also involves a headset, a chair, and other elements to ensure that it moves and sounds like the real thing. Computer simulation can also refer to the process of imitating a real phenomenon with a set of mathematical formulas (for example, weather conditions, chemical reactions, or biological processes). Any phenomena that can be reduced to mathematical data can be simulated on a computer.Xerox subsidy - Word of the Day Jargon
Euphemism for swiping "free" photocopies at one's workplace.
November 13, 2011squidzillionaire - Word of the Day JargonAWOL - Acronym of the Day
Absent Without Leavesocial platform - Word of the Day Technical
The name of the platform that runs social networking services. It is a set of application programming interfaces (APIs) that allow independent Web developers to build applications that run on social networking sites, using the data stored by that network. For example, Facebook uses a proprietary API (known as FBML) whereas Google's OpenSocial uses an open standard that can be adopted by anyone on the Web.
November 14, 2011check-box item - Word of the Day Jargon
Slang for a feature added to a product solely to meet a requirement on a spec sheet, regardless of the feature's utility to the user.LMS - Word of the Day Jargon
A learning management system (LMS) is a software application for the administration, documentation, tracking, and reporting of teaching programs, classroom events, online events, e-learning programs, and training content.solomo - Acronym of the Day
Social, Local, Mobile
November 15, 2011the edge - Word of the Day Jargon
The name given to the terminal nodes of networks, where data transactions are executed on cell phones and other wireless-enabled handheld devices. As computing moves away from desktop computers and toward "edge devices," such as the Blackberry, the Palm PDA, and WAP-enabled phones, it is making more use of distributed computing technologies, such as peer-to-peer networking. While P2P technology is not yet used commercially by applications on wireless devices, edge-software applications, which are basically software programs sold in downloadable modules on the fly (see: by the drink) are on the rise.
"The edge" also refers to the boundary between a local network and the backbone. In that sense, it describes a way of getting around Internet traffic jams. For example, moving digital libraries in a centralized server to caches at the margin (or "the edge of the network") will place the library content nearer to subscribers.square-headed spouse - Word of the Day Jargon
Slang for a computer.
November 16, 2011kiosk - Word of the Day Technical
A boxlike unit that stands on its own and has a computer and monitor for public display. It works through a touch-screen (or built-in keyboard and pointing device) and allows customers to interact with it and make selections.
Commonly seen in airports and tourist venues (to provide information on hotels, restaurants, or public transportation, for example), they are also popular at trade shows and in some retail stores. Many in-store kiosks link shoppers to a Web site where they can browse for items that are not physically located in the store. Kiosks also provide salespeople with more information, such as product specs, warranty info, and pricing comparisons, and they are relatively inexpensive and easy to install.sandbox - Word of the Day Jargon
A "sandbox" is a staging environment that allows for testing and isolates untested code changes from the production or live environment. This can be thought of as a trial run before the Web page has been published.
November 17, 2011distribution - Word of the Day Technical
Generally refers to a controlled subset of recipients for postings to a mailing list or Usenet group. In this instance, distribution lists are handy for such things as "for sale" messages or discussions of regional politics. A distribution list helps organize any topic-oriented messages for multiple recipients.
More recently, a distribution list refers to a list of e-mail recipients who are established as a group. This enables you to easily send an e-mail to everyone in the group, without having to type their individual names in the "to" line each time. Both examples are functions of software programs, albeit different ones. The first example is a broader program commonly used on a server, whereas the second example is a function the e-mail program on your local computer.taskbar lint - Word of the Day JargonNB - Acronym of the Day
November 18, 2011IGWS - Acronym of the Day
It Goes Without Sayingepidermal electronic systems - Word of the Day Technical
A fancy name for wearing our electronic gadgets as a second skin. Researchers have discovered a way to create circuits so thin and flexible —from heart monitors to cell phones— that they can be applied like temporary tattoos.
Historical perspective: By using wires thinner than a hair and mounting them in flexible sheets of silicon and rubber, researchers were able to make digital patches that are as soft and elastic as human skin. These "epidermal electronic systems" can be rubbed on with water instead of needing tape or glue to attach, and they’re small enough to be recharged with solar power. Researchers say the technology will be nearly invisible to wearers and could be used instead of bulky machines to record medical patients’ vital signs. The paste-on computers will also let people interact with video games and MP3 players using muscle or voice commands. According to co-author John Rodgers, they will “blur the distinction between electronics and biology.”
November 19, 2011WML - Word of the Day Technical
A programming language that is part of the Wireless Application Protocol (WAP), it is used to create and transfer Internet data to wireless handheld devices. WML is a slimmed-down version of HTML, but more accurately, it is an XML-based markup language designed to optimize Web text for display on narrowband wireless devices, such as pagers and cell phones.pseudo-supervisor - Word of the Day Jargon
Slang for a federal employee who's neither rank-and-file nor a full-fledged supervisor (i.e., someone with all of the responsibility and none of the authority or appropriate compensation of a supervisor). The Feds have recently begun using the more dignified-sounding "team leader."
November 20, 2011CLEC - Word of the Day Technical
A telco carrier that offers voice and data to small or medium-sized businesses.TPC - Acronym of the Day
The Phone Companytechnical butt-sniffing - Word of the Day Jargon
Posturing of techies trying to determine who has the more impressive computer mojo.
November 21, 2011squammer - Word of the Day Jargon
An InterNIC saboteur who submits bogus registration forms (probably automated) for a given domain, thus typing up the name so that others cannot register it.PTP - Acronym of the Day
Pardon The Puntriple-play network - Word of the Day Technical
A triple-play network is one in which audio (phone), video (TV), and data (Internet) are all provided in a single access subscription. The transmission medium may be fiber optic, cable, or satellite. Triple-play networks exist in many parts of the U.S. and in several other countries.
November 22, 2011SONET - Word of the Day Technical
A family of fiber-optic transmission rates initiated by Bellcore so that the RBOCs could create an infrastructure for new broadband services. SONET was created to provide the flexibility needed to transport many digital signals with many different capacities, and to provide a standard for manufacturers as the use of broadband transmission increases. The transmission rates are from 51.84 Mbps to 13.22 Gbps.piggyback - Word of the Day Jargon
In a general sense, it refers to using someone else's technology. Specifically, it means to hop on board someone else's unsecured wireless network in order to access the Internet with your laptop or mobile device. For example, "let me stop in that hotel lobby, I may be able to piggyback onto their network without having to pay for the Starbucks hotspot." Another example, "At the moment, Google and Yahoo are not charging consumers to piggyback onto their mapping engines."YGTBK - Acronym of the Day
You've Got To Be Kidding
November 23, 2011zombie keys - Word of the Day Jargon
Another name for special characters, please see the special characters definition for an explanation and examples!
November 24, 2011anti- - Word of the Day Technical
It means opposite, or opposed to, or counteracting. In the world of technology, you may hear about anti-virus programs, or anti-adware programs, or anti-spyware programs...these are all software programs designed to counteract the damaging effects of viruses, adware or spyware. Visit these defintions to get information about anti- programs you need to download and run regularly.arc word - Word of the Day Jargon
A recurring term in a television series (such as Dr. Who) spoken by various characters in seemingly unrelated circumstances. Like easter eggs in videogames, arc words matter only to devoted fans; casual viewers rarely notice them.
November 25, 2011access number - Word of the Day Jargon
The telephone number you use to dial into your Internet Service Provider (ISP). To connect to the Internet, you must first establish an account with an ISP in your area. It is important to get a local access number because part of the beauty of the Internet is that you can surf Web sites, find information, and communicate with people all over the world for the cost of a local telephone call. Once you sign up with an ISP, you will receive a list of local or 1-800 telephone numbers you can use to connect to the Internet (see: dial-up connection). Take note: Sometimes, access numbers can be frustrating because of continuous busy signals or no answer at all. Be sure to ask your ISP to provide you with a few alternate access numbers in case this happens. FYI: You can call your ISP anytime and have them walk you through the process of setting up your computer for Internet access-that's what tech support is there for :^)mouse hand - Word of the Day Jargon
The name given to the soreness in one's hand from using a mouse, rollerball, trackball, or nipple all day. Similar to "Blackberry thumb" and "tech neck" one can now get relief from a specialized massage designed to treat RSI.
November 26, 2011thrashing - Word of the Day Jargoneveryware - Word of the Day Technical
Technically ubiquitous computing refers to a post-desktop model of human-computer interaction in which information processing has been thoroughly integrated into everyday objects and activities. As opposed to the desktop model, in which a single user consciously engages a single device for a specialized purpose, someone using "everyware" engages many computational devices and systems simultaneously, in the course of ordinary activities, and may not necessarily even be aware that they are doing so.
Let's look at a couple of examples: In one instance, an everyware computing environment might interconnect lighting and environmental controls with personal biometric monitors woven into clothing so that illumination and heating conditions in a room might be modulated, continuously and imperceptibly (see also: smart clothes). Another example involves refrigerators that are "aware" of their RFID tagged contents, and hence able to both plan a variety of menus from the food actually on hand, and warn users of stale or spoiled food (see also: smart home).
In both of these scenarios, it is apparent that contemporary human-computer interaction models (whether command line, menu-driven, or GUI-based) will be inappropriate and inadequate to the "ubiquitous" case. Experts agree that this suggests that the "natural" interaction paradigm appropriate to a fully robust ubiquitous computing has yet to emerge, however, experts in the field also recognize that in many ways we are already living in a "ubicomp" world. Contemporary devices that lend support to this latter idea include cell phones, digital audio players, radio-frequency identification tags and interactive whiteboards.
Coined by Adam Greenfield, there are a variety of terms that describe the everyware paradigm. These include general terms, like "pervasive computing," "ambient intelligence," and "tangible media," as well as terms that are primarily concerned with the objects involved, such as "physical computing," the "Internet of things," "haptic computing," "things that think," and "spime."
November 27, 2011podcast - Word of the Day Technical
A free, downloadable audio file that can be listened to on your computer--where you can burn it to a compact disc--or on an MP3 player or iPod to enjoy on planes, trains and automobiles. Podcasts were originally thought of as amateurish audio versions of blogs, but no longer; ESPN, NPR, the BBC, Newsweek, news commentators and other highly respected people have podcasts readily available.dustbuster - Word of the Day Jargon
Slang for a phone call or e-mail message you send to someone you haven't corresponded with in a long time - just to "shake the dust off" and see if the connection still works.GGY - Acronym of the Day
Go Google Yourself
November 28, 2011vector graphics - Word of the Day Technical
Also called object-oriented graphics, these programs store images in the form of mathematical representations that can be resized and scaled without distortion. These "draw programs" (as opposed to paint programs) are well suited for architecture, computer-aided design, interior design, and other applications in which precision and scaling capability are more important than artistic effects. Vector graphics use computer algorithms to describe shapes, lines, animation, and so forth. The technology of vector graphics is growing in popularity because the images are scalable and smaller in file size, a plus for online viewing and downloading. Vector graphics were developed in response to the limitations of raster-based graphics (popularly known as GIF and JPG), which use pixel-by-pixel definitions and cannot be resized reliably.computer literate - Word of the Day Jargon
People who feel they know enough about computers to get around without any assistance or who have mastered the art and science of computing are said to be computer literate.JHOMF - Acronym of the Day
Just Helping Out My Friend(s)
November 29, 2011SBTA - Acronym of the Day
Sorry, Being Thick Againreg - Word of the Day Jargon
You're only a newbie once, then you progress to becoming a "reg" (which means a regular user ;-)iframe - Word of the Day Technical
November 30, 2011facebooking - Word of the Day Jargon
Based on a popular social networking site, the term "facebooking" has emerged as a verb to describe the activity of logging in to Facebook in order to create a profile, share personal information, and meet other members.
Facebook started as an online forum to connect students through networks at schools. It has since been opened up to the population in general. People use Facebook to look up people at their school, see how people know each other, find people in their classes, meet other people, and more often than not, flirt.
Considered one of the new forms of Web socializing, "facebooking" has become so popular that just about any college student you know, is likely to tell you that he or she is a member. In fact, many students check their Facebook accounts more often than they check their e-mail.composition flaw - Word of the Day Technical
A security weakness on a computer that appears when separate components interact. A great example of a "composition flaw" was with the launch of Google's desktop search tool in 2004. The glitch permitted an attacker to secretly search the contents of a personal computer over the Internet.