16 dicembre 2010

Vatican Roulette

Another name for the rhythm method of birth control.

Called so because it is the only form of contraception endorsed by the Catholic Church.

"Well, the Pope says condoms are out, and the pill is born of the fires of Hell. So get out the calendar, baby, it's time for Vatican roulette."

Source: Urban Dictionary

See also: Condomania

14 dicembre 2010


Hit Me Up

The internet acronym “Hit Me Up” or HMU as it became to be known, went from being a relatively unknown term in 2009 to one of the most popular trends of 2010. HMU was literally unheard of in 2009, many instances attributed to user error. In May 2009, it was averaging 20 mentions a day, doubling each month to be mentioned in about 1,600 posts a day by the end of the year. Even though it grew quite substantially, it failed to make last years list.

Source: The next Web

9 dicembre 2010


A computer hacker who breaks into systems to further an activist agenda.

Example Citation:

"Members of the Hong Kong Blondes, a covert group, claim to have gotten into Chinese military computers and to have temporarily shut down a communications satellite last year in a 'hacktivist' protest. 'The ultimate aim is to use hacktivism to ameliorate human rights conditions,' says Oxblood Ruffin, a member of the Toronto-based Cult of the Dead Cow (www.cultdeadcow.com), one of the oldest hacker groups in North America, who serves as unofficial spokesman for the having-more-fun Blondes."

—Bay Fang, "Chinese 'hacktivists' spin a Web of trouble," U.S. News & World Report

Source: Word Spy


The expression, a neologism coined by analogy with the term Armageddon, has been used by President Obama to call the snow storm that shut down Washington at the beginning of February. With the same meaning it is possible to find the term “snowpocalypse”.

L’espressione, neologismo coniato per analogia con il termine Armageddon, è stata utilizzata dal Presidente Obama per definire la tempesta di neve che si è abbattuta su Washington all’inizio di febbraio. Con lo stesso significato è possibile trovare anche il termine snowpocalypse.

Source: Englishfor


The term, a blend between “stay” and “vacation”, refers to the trend of spending vacation at home to save money.


Discutibile italianizzazione dell’acronimo americano “staycation”, da “stay” e “vacation”. Viene utilizzato quando si pianifica una vacanza stanziale con attività da turisti. Esempio: prendere il sole restando nella propria città.

fonte: Wired

source: Englishfor

See also: New edition of ODE

7 dicembre 2010


The usually unintentionally humorous misuse or distortion of a word or phrase; especially : the use of a word sounding somewhat like the one intended but ludicrously wrong in the context.

Mrs. Malaprop, character noted for her misuse of words in R. B. Sheridan's comedy The Rivals (1775)
First Known Use: 1849

Jobs you didn't know you could do with a language

What jobs are out there for people with language skills? ‘Teacher’ or ‘translator’ are usually top of this list when you ask people that question, and there is a common misconception that these are the only jobs you can do. Wrong!

Here follows just some of the interesting jobs where languages are specifically required:

Video games tester – playing video games to test that they say the right words in the correct language.

Private jet sales executive – selling private jets, or fractional ownership of them, to high net worth individuals across Europe.

Football analyst – watching and analysing the latest European football matches and producing reports on the failures and successes of the team in different languages. These are passed onto traders to aid investors in betting more successfully.

International assignment manager – working for a large international company to help colleagues re-locate from country to country.

Luxury yacht sales manager – Selling yearly memberships to the rich and famous who want to be charted on a route around the world on their private yacht and waited on by their own staff.

Tour organiser – organising tours for pop bands around Europe, organising and booking venues and general diary and transport management.

Art editor – editor and designer for a large internal magazine for a global bank.

Journalist – uncovering the latest scoop on international financial trends and reporting on the information for a financial magazine.

Press conference assistant – interpreting for Arsenal FC Manager Arsene Wenger and Jose Antonio Reyes for Champions League fixtures in Spain.

Recruitment consultant – yes we had to get this in! You can work all over the world, recruiting people from across the globe into a range of sectors, from marketing to law, finance and IT.

Source: Jobsite

See also Localization QA Tester


Blend of "Information" and "Warfare"

Infowar is the use of information and information systems as weapons in a conflict in which the information and information systems themselves are the targets.

Infowar has been divided into three classes:

1. Individual Privacy

2. Industrial and Economic Espionage

3. Global information warfare, i.e. Nation State versus Nation State.

Most organizations will not need to be concerned over classes I and III, but clearly Class II is relevant to any organization wishing to protect its confidential information.

Also Cyberwar and Netwar.

Source: Seatlle.gov

6 dicembre 2010

Word of the year, auf deutsch!

This week a jury of journalists and young people organised by the Langenscheidt publishing house chose Germany's Youth Word of the Year:

NIVEAULIMBO: This is a newish slang term, roughly meaning "limbo level", for the ever-decreasing quality of TV programs or the decline in the value ofconversation at parties.

ARSCHFAX: for avisible label on underwear.

SPECKBARBIE: a deeply pejorative term that may be translated as "bacon Barbie", a young woman dressed to the nines in clothing that's much tootight. The young people on the jury got it down to fourth placebecause they thought it was too rude.

In Switzerland this week, a six-member jury made up of media andentertainment personalities selected:

AUSSCHAFFUNG: (expulsion) asits word of the year, a few days after the Swiss voted to expelforeigners who had committed crimes in the country. The unword oft he year is FIFA-ETHIKKOMMISSION: the ethics commission of FIFA,the world governing body of football, a choice that will resonatewith British soccer fans still saddened by the England's failurethis week to be selected to host the 2018 World Cup, amid chargesof corruption among members of FIFA's governing body.

L'essentiel Online

World Wide Words

3 dicembre 2010

Big Society

A political concept whereby a significant amount of responsibility for the running of a society’s services is devolved to local communities and volunteers.

The phrase was coined by Prime Minister David Cameron, who said in July: “The big society ... is about liberation – the biggest, most dramatic redistribution of power from elites in Whitehall to the man and woman on the street.”
David Cameron spells out how his vision of a 'Big Society' could address Britain's problems.

David Cameron's big idea of the campaign is the "big society". This was launched with some fanfare at the end of March at an event in London, and made it into the Conservative manifesto. Three weeks later, it was being buried by Cameron's colleagues, one of whom said, "We need to turn Oliver Letwin's Hegelian dialectic into voter-friendly stuff." (Letwin, chairman of the Conservative Research Department, has a PhD in philosophy.)That shadow minister meant to dismiss the idea, but in doing so he revealed a finer appre­ciation of the philosophical antecedents of the "big society" than he might have wanted to admit to. For what Hegel called, in his Philosophy of Right, "civil society" - the stage "which intervenes between the family and the state" - looks very much like the network of voluntary organisations to which the Tories propose to "redistribute power" as they seek to weaken the power of Labour's big state.

Read also:

Do you speak Cameronese?

'Delivery's out, implementation'a in': The civil servant's essential guide to Davespeak


High expectations followed by a letdown; a portmanteau of "anticipation" and "disappointment." According to legend, the word was coined in the 1960s by a Los Angeles ad agency that used it as the punchline of a holiday card whose outside read, in paraphrase: "At this time of year, just one word sums up the feeling in all of our hearts." Now used for any instance of media or technology hype.

Source: Fritinancy

Digital Nomads

Definition: The ever-expanding group of workers using wireless technology to eliminate the need for an office.

Usage: Scoreboard for 2009: Cyber Luddites 1.0; Digital Nomads 1.0 x 10100

Source: Entrepreneur


Definition: The current recession, which has hurt men more than women.

Usage: In the Great Mancession of '09, 80 percent of jobs lost were held by men, and unemployment rates neared postwar records. No change in percentage of household chores completed.

Source: Entrepreneur

See also:




Definition: Someone who smells opportunity in the medical marijuana industry.

Usage: About 25,000 ganjapreneurs and their customers attended the inaugural THC Expo in downtown Los Angeles last summer.

Source: Entrepreneur

Ramen Profitable

Definition: A business that makes just enough money to cover basic living expenses, such as toilet paper, running water and instant ramen.

Usage: "Of course we're profitable," Marc snapped. Lydia took in the unwashed plastic utensils and stained papers on the scuffed table that doubled as his office.
"Yeah," she agreed, "ramen profitable."

Source: Entrepreneur

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