Cyberslackers beware, the Oxford Dictionary sees you

Cyberslackers beware, the Oxford Dictionary sees you


If you spend half your day surfing the Web rather than working, your boss can probably think of a few words to call you but here’s one that might be new to them: cyberslacker. It’s one of over 100 IT-inspired or related words that have made their way into the latest edition of the Oxford Dictionary of English for the first time.

The new words point to the continuing and increasing importance of technology in everyday life as words and acronyms that might once have been considered obscure are now becoming common enough for them to get an entry in the dictionary. n

Wordage for the modern age

Here’s a selection of some of the other new words

* Augmented reality, noun, a technology that superimposes a computer-generated image on a user’s view of the real world, thus providing a composite view.

* brochureware, noun, websites or Web pages produced by converting a company’s printed marketing or advertising material into an Internet format, typically providing little or no opportunity for interactive contact with prospective customers.

* biometric signature, noun, the unique pattern of a bodily feature such as the retina, iris, or voice, encoded on an identity card and used for recognition and identification purpose.

* clickstream, noun, a series of mouse clicks made by a user while accessing the Internet, especially as monitored to assess a person’s interests for marketing purposes.

* cyberstalking, noun, the repeated use of electronic communications to harass or frighten someone, for example by sending threatening emails.

* cyberterrorism, noun, the politically motivated use of computers and information technology to cause severe disruption or widespread fear in society.

* cybersquatting, noun, the practice of registering names, especially well-known company or brand names, as Internet domains, in the hope of reselling them at a profit.

* digital divide, noun, the gulf between those who have ready access to computers and the Internet, and those who do not.

* DoS, abbreviation for denial of service, denoting an interruption in an authorised user’s access to a computer network, typically one caused with malicious intent.

* killer app, noun, a feature, function, or application of a new technology or product which is presented as virtually indispensable or much superior to rival products.

* meatspace, noun, the physical world, as opposed to cyberspace or a virtual environment.

* mobo, noun, a motherboard.

* overclock, verb, run (the processor of one’s computer) at a speed higher than that intended by the manufacturers.

* warchalking, noun, the practice of marking a series of symbols on walls and pavements to indicate the presence of a nearby wireless networking station that can be used to obtain illicit free access to the Internet.

* weblog, noun, a personal website, on which an individual or group of users record opinions, links to other sites, etc. on a regular basis.

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