Dec 1, 2010 by Lindsay Gower
Welcome to December, the month in which we use a lot of words we never utter the other eleven months of the year. Let’s look at a few:
How we feel
Merry. Pleasing and delightful, marked by festivity or gaiety. In use almost 1,000 years! From the Old English mirige, meaning pleasant. After this month, will go dormant until the Merry Month of May.
Jolly. Full of high spirits, joyous, given to conviviality, cheerful. Another oldie, although only since the 14th century. From the Middle English joli, which itself probably derived from Old Norse j - the midwinter festival …
Oct 6, 2010 by Aaron Rubman
Here are more acronyms to add to parts 1 and 2.
PPC - Pay Per Click
PPC is one of the three main models of paid online advertisement. In the PPC model you pay the site or service hosting your ad every time someone follows a link placed in the ad. This means that universally appealing teaser ads are actually a bad idea as you will attract clicks from people who will never convert to sales or participants. On the other hand, an add that’s been well tailored to your service will actually cover you through a few false starts …
Sep 28, 2010 by Aaron Rubman
Last week I started building a glossary of acronyms essential to understanding the modern internet. Links to that article are interspersed amid five new acronyms to help you master the web.
Yet More Acronyms to Rule the Web
API - Application Programming Interface
An API is a set of standards used by one program so that it can interact with another without having to reveal what goes on inside. It’s sort of like a postal address for computer programs. So long as you properly format the address on the envelope, your letter will reach the desired destination, even if you do …
Sep 23, 2010 by Aaron Rubman
Earlier this week I discovered that one of my best friends from college, who is now a professor in his own right, had never seen the abbreviation RT for retweet. It was a somewhat sobering realization that even though we grew up with personal computers and Internet access, social media ken is not inherent to my generation. Finding out that a good friend, who is one of my more learned contemporaries, was operating without the base vocabulary for today’s online world inspired me to put together a quick primer of acronyms to rule the web.
Five Definitions to Start With
RT - …
May 5, 2010 by Lindsay Gower
Call them memory crutches or call them mnemonic devices, they can help you remember to turn right at Maple Street, and which planet is closest to the Sun. Don’t we all need that?!
Most mnemonics are verbal, a word, phrase or rhyme, but they can be visual, auditory or kinesthetic: I still move my right hand if I want to double-check left from right.
Why do mnemonics work?
We could just learn the order of the planets: Mercury Venus Terra Mars Jupiter Saturn Uranus Neptune Pluto. But it was easier for me to learn them by remembering: Mother Very Thoughtfully Made Jelly Sandwiches …
Apr 7, 2010 by Lindsay Gower
In Part Two of my series on writing clear e-mail messages, we’ll consider good word choice.
I’m obsessed with words, I know. I’ve got Merriam-Webster’s homepage not just bookmarked, but on my bookmarks toolbar. Most of you are more relaxed than that, but using the right word correctly matters if you want your e-mails and other business writing to be (a) read all the way through and (b) understood.
So let’s look at a few words that confuse and how to use them correctly:
Literally and virtually are not superlatives
Virtually means nearly, almost, and for all practical purposes. …
Mar 5, 2010 by Aaron Rubman
Web Log. A blog is a website maintained by an individual or group that is characterized by a persistent record of old content and the regular addition of new content. A typical blog will present these entries in reverse chronological order.
A list of recommended blogs that is typically displayed in a persistent sidebar
The whole of the blogging world, including all blogs and those who write them
Placing a pre-written piece of code into your blog or website so that you can display a video, widget, banner, or content block created by someone else. …
May 4, 2009 by Aaron Rubman
The Devil’s Dictionary was begun in a weekly paper in 1881, and was continued in a desultory way at long intervals until 1906. - Abrose Bierce, Author’s Preface
In the century since Ambrose Bierce came out with his humorous dictionary, a number of new terms and phrases have entered the English lexicon. No doubt the cynic would have tried his hand at some of them as well, but as he is no longer available, I have taken a shot at it.
Here are a trio of other definitions that might be useful.
Framing: frame, v.
The act of displaying information in order to achieve …