The TechWeenie Glossary


Dilberted

To be exploited and oppressed by your boss. Derived from the experiences of Dilbert, the geek-in-hell comic strip character. "I've been dilberted again. The old man revised the specs for the fourth time this week."

Link Rot

The process by which links on a web page became as obsolete as the sites they're connected to change location or die.

Object Value

In industrial design, a measure of consumers' immediate desire for an object, even before they know or understand what it does. "Gassee may be nuts, but at least the BeBox has great object value."

Chip Jewelry

A euphemism for old computers destined to be scrapped or turned into decorative ornaments. "I paid three grand for that Mac SE, and now it's nothing but chip jewelry."

Crapplet

A badly written or profoundly useless Java applet. "I just wasted 30 minutes downloading this stinkin' crapplet!"

Plug-and-Play

A new hire who doesn't need any training. "The new guy, John, is great. He's totally plug-and-play."

World Wide Wait

The real meaning of WWW.

CGI Joe

A hard-core CGI script programmer with all the social skills and charisma of a plastic action figure.

Dorito Syndrome

Feelings of emptiness and dissatisfaction triggered by addictive substances that lack nutritional content. "I just spent six hours surfing the Web, and now I've got a bad case of Dorito Syndrome."

Under Mouse Arrest

Getting busted for violating an online service's rule of conduct. "Sorry I couldn't get back to you. AOL put me under mouse arrest."

Glazing

Corporate-speak for sleeping with your eyes open. A popular pastime at conferences and early-morning meetings. "Didn't he notice that half the room was glazing by the second session?"

404

Someone who's clueless. From the World Wide Web message "404, URL Not Found" meaning that the document you've tried to access can't be located. "Don't bother asking him...he's 404, man."

Dead Tree Edition

The paper version of a publication available in both paper and electronic forms, as in: "The dead tree edition of the San Francisco Chronicle..."

Egosurfing

Scanning the net, databases, print media, or research papers looking for the mention of your name.

Graybar Land

The place you go while you're staring at a computer that's processing something very slowly (while you watch the gray bar creep across the screen). "I was in graybar land for what seemed like hours, thanks to that CAD rendering."

Juice A Brick

To recharge the big, heavy NiCad batteries used in portable video cameras. "You better start juicing those bricks, we've got a long shoot tomorrow."

Open-Collar Workers

People who work at home or telecommute.

Shopper-Lifting

When a store's electronic scanner (usually inadvertently) prices an item higher than the price on the store's shelf or in an advertisement.

Squirt The Bird

To transmit a signal up to a satellite. "Crew and talent are ready...what time do we squirt the bird?"

Brain Fart

A byproduct of a bloated mind producing information effortlessly. A burst of useful information. "I know you're busy on the Microsoft story, but can you give us a brain fart on the Mitnik bust?" Variation of old hacker slang that had more negative connotations.

Cobweb Site

A World Wide Web Site that hasn't been updated for a long time. A dead web page.

It's a Feature

From the adage "It's not a bug, it's a feature." Used sarcastically to describe an unpleasant experience that you wish to gloss over.

Keyboard Plaque

The disgusting buildup of dirt and crud found on computer keyboards. "Are there any other terminals I can use? This one has a bad case of keyboard plaque."

Batmobiling

Putting up an emotional shield just as a relationship enters that intimate, vulnerable stage. Refers to the retractable armor covering the Batmobile.

Career-Limiting Move (CLM)

Used among microserfs to describe an ill-advised activity. Trashing your boss while he or she is within earshot is a serious CLM.

Elvis Year

The peak year of something's popularity. "Barney the dinosaur's Elvis year was 1993."

Midair Passenger Exchange

Grim air-traffic-controller speak for a head-on collision. Midair passenger exchanges are immediately followed by "aluminum rain."

Alpha Geek

The most knowledgable, technically proficient person in an office or work group. "Ask Larry, he's the alpha geek around here."

Vomit Comet

A plane used to simulate zero-G for astronaut flight training. Trainees often get motion sickness inside.

Adminisphere

The rarified organizational layers beginning just above the rank and file. Decisions that fall from the adminisphere are often profoundly inappropriate or irrelevant to the problems they were designed to solve.

Tourists

People who are taking training classes just to get a vacation from their jobs. "We had about three serious students in the class; the rest were tourists."

Blowing Your Buffer

Losing one's train of thought. Occurs when the person you are speaking with won't let you get a word in edgewise or has just said something so astonishing that your train gets derailed. "Damn, I just blew my buffer!"

Begathon

A TV or radio fund-raiser for a charity, religious organization, or PBS station that employs every known form of guilt, sweet talking, and outright begging to get people to fork over the dough.

Gray Matter

Older, experienced business people hired by young entrepreneurial firms looking to appear more reputable and established.

Bookmark

To take note of a person for future reference (a metaphor borrowed from web browsers). "I bookmarked him after seeing his cool demo at Siggraph."

Nyetscape

Nickname for AOL's less-than-full-featured Web browser.

Beepilepsy

The brief seizure people sometimes suffer when their beepers go off, especially in vibrator mode. Characterized by physical spasms, goofy facial expressions, and stopping speech in mid-sentence.

Client-Server Action

Geek euphemism for having sex. "I went to the Oracle party the other night hoping for some client-server action."

Salmon Day

The experience of spending an entire day swimming upstream only to get screwed in the end.


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