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Visualizzazione dei post da ottobre, 2010


Terremoti stellari , un nuovo fenomeno osservato dalla sonda Kepler della Nasa che promette di svelare uno degli enigmi del cielo. Così come i terremoti che avvengono sulla Terra forniscono ai geologi informazioni sulla struttura interna del pianeta, le “starquakes” apporteranno ulteriori metodi per la determinazione di età, grandezza e grado di evoluzione di una stella. tratto da: Blitzquotidiano


Government Organized Non-Governmental Organization. Many NGOs are not actually NGOs. They are what observers are now calling GONGOs – government organized non-governmental organizations . They are funded, staffed, and otherwise supported by governments. The idea is not to instigate or inspire change, but rather to control and manage it. read more on: Schott's Vocab

Blackberry diplomacy

Diplomatic messages sent electronically using a Blackberry or similar device. " Mr. Erdogan's warm embrace of Iran's Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in Istanbul as "a dear friend" and his opposition to further sanctions against Iran (voted June 9 by the U.N. Security Council) mark Turkey's new " BlackBerry diplomacy ," a break with conventional diplomacy - when major shifts take place in real time above the heads of foreign-policy officials and the diplomats with whom they normally deal." read more: washingtontimes

Double Dip Recession

A double-dip recession refers to a recession followed by a short-lived recovery, followed by another recession. The causes for a double-dip recession vary but often include a slowdown in the demand for goods and services because of layoffs and spending cutbacks from the previous downturn. A double-dip (or even triple-dip) is a worst-case scenario. Fear that the economy will move back into a deeper and longer recession makes recovery even more difficult. Source: Investipedia

What's the point of niceness?

published on: BBC News The governor of the Bank of England says it's been a nice decade, but is niceness really something to strive for, asks Julian Joyce, in the first of a series of articles about changing times. The last 10 years have been a " nice " decade, according to Bank of England governor Mervyn King. He was of course using the word in an acronymous and strictly economic sense, a shortening of Non-Inflationary Consistent Expansion . But the choice of this acronym was deliberate, carrying an undertone related to something more than inflation.


Acronym to describe the financial characteristics of Britain’s next decade: Savings, Orderly Budgets, Equitable Rebalancing. The Governor of the Bank of England has warned that Britons face a decade of saving more and spending less , Philip Aldrick reported in The Telegraph : "Alluding to the “Non-Inflationary Consistently  Expansionary” [NICE] decade just passed and coining a new acronym to describe the years ahead, he warned: “The next decade will not be nice. History suggests that after a financial crisis the hangover lasts for a while. So the next decade is likely to be a ‘SOBER’ decade – a decade of savings, orderly budgets, and equitable rebalancing… A sober decade may not be fun but it is necessary for our economic health.” Source:  Schott's Vocab

Why do we google?

Why we make verbs of some brand names like "Google" and "Facebook", but not of others like "Powerpoint" or "Excel" or "iPod"? published on: Johnson According to G.L.'s First Rule of Brand-Verbing , which is that people will verb a brand name if it refers to a clearly-defined, frequent action for which there isn't a perfectly adequate pre-existing verb. So to google became to search on the web, to facebook meant to look up or contact someone on Facebook, and to skype covers calling someone by VoIP telephony.

Facebook narcissism

Presenting a more positive view of yourself than in reality, on social networking site Facebook The neologism " Facebook narcissism " has even emerged to label the phenomenon. Many users present such a lopsided version of themselves that the "beautiful life" presented online bears little resemblance to the real thing. Published on: macmillandictionary

Disease Branding

October 18, 2010, 1:30 pm Published on: Schott's Vocab Hyping the profile of a medical condition in order to sell its treatment. Writing for CNN, Carl Elliott compared the modern marketing of certain medicines with Edward Bernays’s idea, in the 1920s, of selling pianos by popularizing the idea that sophisticates had music rooms : Just as Bernays sold pianos by selling the music room, pharmaceutical marketers now sell drugs by selling the diseases that they treat. The buzzword is “ disease branding .” To brand a disease is to shape its public perception in order to make it more palatable to potential patients. Panic disorder, reflux disease, erectile dysfunction, restless legs syndrome, bipolar disorder, overactive bladder, ADHD, premenstrual dysphoric disorder, even clinical depression: All these conditions were once regarded as rare until a marketing campaign transformed the brand. Once a branded disease has achieved a degree of cultural legitimacy, there is no need

Lycra lout

A cyclist who flouts the laws of the road, jumping red lights etc. Prosecutions of cyclists who run through red traffic lights has plummeted dramatically - with fewer than half as many 'lycra louts' facing a ticket. published on: macmillandictionary/open-dictionary See also: MAMIL .

The acronym hype

Some say it’s annoying, but some find it useful and makes people’s lives less complicated. Yet others say it’s a form of language abuse. Many believe it is another form of creativity. Observing the widespread use of acronyms in urban society will help us understand social trends. The " Acronym inflation " is a condition where everybody can invent new acronyms and neglect the normal rules of thumb in the official language. It used to be the government and authority that liked to use acronyms, but now everybody seems to be trying to make their own phrases. The acronym hype prevalent in this society, is being attributable to language economy where people are encouraged to be as efficient as possible in everything, including using words . The technology has played its part in supporting this trend with people sending messages via mobile phones and the Internet

"Buzz", "chat", "tuning": la fine degli anglicismi in Europa?

Crociata anti-anglicismi in Francia. Buzz, chat, newsletter, tuning e talk dal 30 marzo 2010 hanno ceduto il posto a espressioni francesi, create durante un concorso per studenti. Quest’iniziativa del segretario di Stato alla francofonia avrà seguito in altri paesi europei? Tour d’Europa per conoscere meglio questi anglicismi unificatori. I francesi sono fieri della lingua di Molière? Un vecchio cliché che continua a resistere. Lo dimostra il concorso Francomot (“parole franche”) lanciato nel gennaio 2010 dal segretario di Stato alla francofonia Alain Jouyandet: dal 30 marzo, cinque anglicismi lessicali sono stati sostituiti da altrettanti termini francesi ideati da alcuni studenti, sotto lo sguardo attento di una giuria presieduta dallo scrittore Jean-Christophe Rufin e composta da musicisti rap come Mc Solaar o Sapho. I video su Youtube non faranno più “ buzz ” nella rete francese ma faranno “ramdam”, parola estrapolata direttamente dall’arabo. Niente più “ chat ” ma piuttosto “ébla

Five words shaping our future

The modern technological blur we’re all living through produces new ideas and products constantly, and language trots along trying to keep up. In “ Virtual Words: Language on the Edge of Science and Technology ,” published this month by Oxford University Press, Jonathon Keats looks at the new words churned out on the road to the future and assesses their place in society. Will they succeed like the word "blog"? Or fail like the word " flog " (a fake blog for promotional purposes)? Here, Keats, who writes Wired Magazine’s Jargon Watch column, picks five words that not only have staying power but help us peer toward the horizon. By Jonathon Keats WashingtonPost We tend to think of prophecy as the stuff of superstition. Yet just as people can influence the future with their predictions, words occasionally anticipate the reality they come to reflect. Here are five that are helping to define our technological society. MEMRISTORA resistor with electrical memory . For thre


Acronym used to describe the U.S., Europe, the U.K. and Japan: “Heavily Indebted Industrialized Countries.” published on: Schott's Vocab In The Wall Street Journal, Kelly Evans revealed a new acronym indicative of changing “global economic fortunes” – HIICs: That is shorthand for the U.S., Europe, the U.K. and Japan, or, as HSBC currency strategists are calling them, “heavily indebted industrialized countries,” or HIICs. They are displaying the kinds of investment risks traditionally associated with global backwaters. “Developed markets are basically behaving like emerging ones,” says HSBC’s Richard Yetsenga. And emerging markets are quickly becoming more developed. Sensing and perhaps fueling the shift, investors have this year yanked some $36 billion from stock-market funds investing in HIICs, according to research firm EPFR Global, and stuffed $45 billion into emerging-market funds. Who can blame them? The “BRICs” of Brazil, Russia, India and China are “where the population gro

Brave New Words

This quirky, small-format gift book provides an introduction to more than 200 of the latest additions to the ever-expanding English lexicon. Featuring one word per page together with a brief explanation and an example of usage, listings include such gems as ' denture venturer ' (the older adventure traveller), ' textual harassment ' (persistently insulting someone by text message) and ' blamestorming ' (using a meeting to discuss who is responsible when something has gone wrong). This simple concept book provides both a fun gift and an interesting talking point sure to please word enthusiasts everywhere. more on: MacMillan

Twhatever next? - the lexicon of Twitter

by Kerry Maxwell Why bother twalking in person? Why not spend your twime tweeting ? – twit’s twonnes more fun! Sorry, I’ll stop, before this gets irritating, but anyone who, like me, spends time observing new additions to our vocabulary, can’t fail to have noticed the fun people are currently having with that consonant cluster ‘ tw ’. Excluding the word two and its derivatives, words beginning ‘tw’ only occupy a couple of pages out of more than 1700 in the current edition of the Macmillan English Dictionary , but contemporary usage is beginning to suggest that the run of ‘tw’ entries may begin to grow a little... I’m talking of course about word formation in the world of Twitter . Enjoy reading this article !

707 Penn Gallery exhibit gives artistic, visual life to digital exchanges

By Kurt Shaw PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW Wednesday, October 6, 2010 Currently on display at the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust's 707 Penn Gallery, Downtown, the exhibit "TXT" presents the multifaceted nature of our use of text. For example, both Glenn Wonsettler and Dan Waber employ acronyms and other shorthand uses of language common in computer and cell phone-based exchanges to challenge the viewer's notion of our ever-changing contemporary language.

Buzzword Watch: "Acq-hire"

Buzzword Watch: "Acq-hire" September 28, 2010 By Ben Zimmer Earlier this month, a post by Dan Frommer on Business Insider had this to say about Google, Facebook and Apple: "Recently, all three companies have been making a lot of 'acq-hires ,' where they buy a company to acquire its human resources." You read that right: acq-hire. published on: visualthesaurus

Are You Fluent in Recession?

After you lost your " job-job ," you've been " decruited " more than once—maybe that " job stopper " on your neck had something to do with it—and because your financial outlook is somewhere between " blark " and " Full Walton " lately, you've been alternating between " Wonderbreading " and the " Peanut Butter Challenge " and need to get "approval from corporate" before you buy even one lousy coffee. Does that sentence make any sense to you? If so, there's no need to read Coupon Sherpa's 25 Recessionista Slang Terms, which would tell you that, for instance, " decruited " means: To be fired from a position you haven't even started. Usage: "Man, they decruited me before I finished the orientation." Here, some other recession-era words and phrases: Recession porn : With an apparently resurgent economy, the media genre known as recession porn may be gone for good. What, ex

Recessions-Era Words and Phrases

Are You a 'Nevertiree'? Or Are You Among the 'Accidentally Retired'? The economic crisis has brought about a " new normal ," in which Americans are adjusting their expectations concerning work, investing, spending, and one's "lifestyle." The recession has also brought with it new words and phrases, like "new normal." Here are some others: "Reluctant Breadwinner" As defined recently by BusinessWeek , these are: Women who wanted to stay home until their income suddenly became critical to the well-being of their families. "Nevertiree" As defined by Barclay's Wealth (via CR), this is: a person who intends never to retire but instead enjoy a life of "nevertirement." Hmmm… we may need a new definition of "enjoy," because the way the word is used here, it doesn't sound fun or "enjoyable." "Accidentally Retired" The NY Times describes this phe

New! Neologisms of the week

TWITTERING : The fanciful language creations associated with the online Twitter system Busted : has modified oil rig, or just plain rig. A database search of coverage of the BP spill finds the first recorded use of busted came nine days into the crisis on April 29, when the MSNBC host Ed Schultz said, “The busted rig is leaking — get this — 200,000 gallons of oil a day.” Chunking : In recent decades, the study of language acquisition and instruction has increasingly focused on “chunking”: how children learn language not so much on a word-by-word basis but in larger “lexical chunks” or meaningful strings of words that are committed to memory Cracking the jargon : how to interpret five sentences commonly used by stock market experts MAMIL : Middle-Aged Men In Lycra, taking up cycling with enthusiasm, in the process spending freely on high-end cycles and all the accoutrements, especially the clothing.