Questions about computers, programming and IT.

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1answer
97 views

Word/phrase origin of “StackExchange” [duplicate]

Because of the success of StackExchange.com I am having difficulty researching the term on the Internet. Where does it come from? I know the phrase comes out of computer programming, but my ...
0
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2answers
229 views

What a common abbreviation for two's complement code

What a common abbreviation for two's complement code? I've searched on Google, and find "TCC" as a required abbreviation on thefreedictionary. Is it commonly recognized? Or may be there are some other ...
1
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1answer
177 views

To 'link' or 'relate' two items?

I'm developing a system in which users can 'link' separate items by using a 'Link' button. In the database, this 'link' is called a 'relation'. I'm inclined to change the text of the button to ...
1
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2answers
4k views

What is meaning of “on the fly” in computer science? [closed]

I am not native English speakers, I often see " on the fly " in some program docs or blogs. I don't know the exact meaning of it. Is it a idiom? e.g.: Since sandman doesn't have any advanced ...
3
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3answers
218 views

Primary is to Secondary as Principal is to…what? [closed]

If something is divided into principal divisions, what is the next level "down"? For example, if a generic term for a US state or Canadian province is a "principal country division", what is a good ...
0
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4answers
153 views

Is “delete” a hyponym of “edit”? [closed]

In computer science, is delete considered to be included in edit, or are they two separate things? Example: Editing item details and deleting items. In my case, both can be done by the same user ...
1
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1answer
282 views

How are invented names like “scrypt” pronounced that include nonstandard abbreviations?

In technical contexts, I often come across terms that are invented names where some underlying meaning is not spelled out but can be inferred. This inferred meaning would often be lost if one tried to ...
0
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1answer
166 views

Opposite of “specialized” in the context of computing units

A graphics card or an algebraic co-processor is a specialized computing unit. A conventional CPU, which understands a lot more instructions, is a flexible computing unit. I'm not happy with using ...
0
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3answers
667 views

Augmentation in Computer Science

How would you define augmentation in terms of Computer Science? I've heard it used as ‘strengthening’: “In jQuery, you design a page, and then you make it dynamic. This is ...
4
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4answers
281 views

What is the etymology of “[computer] terminal”?

I suspect it's something to do with the fact that back in the Olden Days of computing, a terminal was connected to a mainframe computer system, and thus a user would be sat at the terminal end of the ...
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5answers
482 views

singular and collective noun for included computer source code

In software development, one often has multiple individual files that are referenced or "included" by others. What is the noun for each one of those individual files, and what would you call the ...
15
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7answers
643 views

Is there a word for the action of lifting the mouse to go further?

Using a computer mouse to point to a far away target and running out of table surface (or hand range), one typically lifts the mouse, moves it in the opposite direction, puts it back down, and ...
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6answers
6k views

What's another way to say “problem area”?

Looking for some powerful, formal words with a slight negative connotation for a resume/performance assessment. The general context pertains to computer software development. These aren't my problem ...
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3answers
473 views

Word to refer to computers as opposed to consoles

I'm looking for a word that you'd use to refer to all computers that distinguishes them from gaming consoles. The word "computer" is too general - that would include servers and other industrial ...
1
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3answers
285 views

looking for a word or expressing to express matching, symmetric

Background: A packet has a source IP and a destination IP. I set the source IP as 10.0.0.3. The destination IP can be set as 10.0.0.1, 127.0.0.1 or 138.9.32.4. These 3 IPs belong ...
4
votes
1answer
905 views

When did “creep” get associated with computer controlled units in games?

I first saw this term in use for neutral units in Warcraft 3 (released 2002), and then that got carried through derivatives such as Dota (2003). Was Warcraft 3 the first time creep was used as a ...
5
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1answer
156 views

Provenance of 'deprecated' (in the programming sense)

What are some early uses of "deprecation" in computer science? When did the word enter common usage in the field of programming? Are there any particularly well-known examples of early deprecations ...
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2answers
5k views

Difference between ‘“folder” and “directory”

What is the difference between folder and directory in the context of computer science?
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2answers
118 views

Inverse for the term "refinement”

In computer science there is a term "refinement". Refinement is a hierarchical relationship between two concepts. If B refines A, then the requirements of B are a superset of the requirements of A. ...
9
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1answer
1k views

When did “Easter egg” begin to mean “hidden feature”?

Can anybody trace the origins of 'Easter egg' for this meaning?
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4answers
104 views

Failing sometimes for unknown reason

Context: I have an automated test that sometimes fails for unknown reason. It's a sort of false positive: the feature it tests is not broken. Most of the time, either it succeeds or fails for right ...
1
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1answer
494 views

Prepositions used with “command line” and “shell”

I found the following variations on the use of "command line" and "shell" in computing and wonder which are correct and how to use them appropriately. Command line: is it "at the command line" or ...
1
vote
1answer
154 views

What is a “big-ender pair”?

In the sci.math newsgroup ca. 23 Mar 2013, in thread Subject: Re: math formulae?, I saw the following: > >"Is the tournment liken to a bridge tournment? The problem is vague. > > ...
23
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2answers
5k views

Is it “falsy” or “falsey”?

I have seen both versions of the word, falsy and falsey. It can mean "something that is equivalent to false" in computer science, such as "The only two falsy values in the Ruby Language are false and ...
2
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2answers
426 views

What is the word for a pair of bytes?

Bit is a portmanteau of binary digit. A byte is 8 bits. A nibble is 4 bits (half a byte). Is there a word for a pair of bytes?
8
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3answers
5k views

Etymology of “ping”

According to Wikipedia ping, the IP network utility, was named after the sonar "ping", which is apparently onomatopoeic. However, "ping" is now used in the vernacular in the sense of "pinging" ...
33
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3answers
2k views

Why is a “splash screen” so called?

Wikipedia describes a "splash screen" as such... "A splash screen is an image that appears while a game or program is loading." and its purpose... [Splash screens] are typically used by ...
2
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1answer
184 views

Etymology of “modal dialogs” in computerese

When programming you may deal with so-called modal dialogs — these are windows where you are supposed to provide information before you are allowed to proceed any further. A modal dialog blocks or ...
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3answers
6k views

What is the correct pronunciation of “regex”?

The term regular expression is often shortened to regex. What is the correct pronunciation of the g in regex? Is it like the g1 in gallium, or is it like the g2 in giraffe? I’ve heard it said both ...
7
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3answers
490 views

Origin and scope of “cruft”

I just had to look up "cruft" (jargon for software or hardware that is of poor quality), as used in a comment to an earlier question. But I can't find any details of etymology, and I don't know how ...
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2answers
2k views

“Feeding” data or “entering” data: which one is correct?

Which is the better verb to use with data: feeding or entering? Furthermore, which is more common in the literature of the field and which do people who work in the field say more often? Are they ...
23
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8answers
2k views

What do you call a computer window when it is not maximized or minimized?

What do you call a computer window when it is not maximized or minimized? I have been using unmaximized, but I feel there is a more precise way.
3
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1answer
62 views

String slicing nomenclature

Maybe I'm just not very good with Google, but I'm looking for good terms to use when describing manipulation of strings of characters, specifically words to describe: Removing a prefix Removing a ...
7
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1answer
691 views

Is “catenate” used in IT parlance?

When I was doing my IT degree in the 80s we learned that, in programming terms, concatenation was the act of joining two strings together. Recently I was reading a technical manual and came across ...
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2answers
144 views

Pronunciation of OS X versions [closed]

I don't feel like this belongs on SU, so I put it here. I know that "OS X" is pronounced "oh-ess ten," but how should the common construction "OS X 10.9" be pronounced? The primary possibility I can ...
3
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3answers
193 views

“Run on an OS” vs. “run under an OS”

What is the correct way to specify the operating system you are targeting or using? Is a program running on or under an operating system (OS)? Is a machine running an OS or under an OS?
5
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3answers
2k views

“Intended” vs. “intentional”

I'm reading an article about intention recognition in computing areas and somehow robotics. I came across this sentence: This problem has been discussed as the difference between “intended and ...
10
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3answers
9k views

What is the difference between obsolete and deprecate in computer science?

Given the two terms "obsolete" and "deprecate" in computer science, what is the difference between them? What I understand, Deprecated means still available for use but will no longer be developed ...
3
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2answers
584 views

How popular are the terms “software” and “hardware” outside the computer world?

If I’m not mistaken, the terms software and hardware were ordinary English words, but they have been widely popularized by popularity of computers. How much they are common (and acceptable by native ...
14
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6answers
4k views

What is “embarrassing” about an embarrassingly parallel problem?

In computer science, a problem that is obviously decomposable into many identical but separate subtasks is called embarrassingly parallel. An example is a cryptographic brute force attack, in which ...
2
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5answers
4k views

“Concatenate” vs. “merge” vs. “join” in scientific text

I wonder what the difference is between concatenate, merge and join from the lexical point of view. These words are often used in scientific or programming text. It seems to me that different authors ...
1
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5answers
6k views

What’s the difference between “tool” and “utility”?

I find these two words appear together often, especially mentioned as tool and utility for the Unix operating system. So I am wondering about the difference between them.
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3answers
290 views

Expression to describe error’s way

In the context of a computer system, events that fail to go to their destination are redirected to another one through several steps. I’m looking for an expression to describe the way they take. I ...
15
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4answers
22k views

Is there a word meaning “append”, but at the beginning, not the end? [closed]

In computer programming, when you append a "string" to another, you add it to the end of the former string. E.g. String string1 = "abcd"; String string2 = "efgh"; Appending the two strings would ...
0
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2answers
2k views

“Computing” vs. “computation”

Can anybody explain the difference between computing and computation? Which one is correct: computing/computation node (to refer to a server) computing/computation power (to refer to the FLOPS of a ...
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4answers
4k views

What does the word “hacking” or “hacker” come from? [closed]

Is there a history behind the word "hacker" and "hacking"? Could it have anything to do with "hashing" i.e. using a hash function?
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3answers
80 views

What is an overall term for a service that publishes digital publications?

I'm looking at what I am calling Digital Edition Solution Providers (ways of taking a PDF of a magazine and turning it into a website, and content for sale on Apple Newsstand, Android, KindleFire ...
1
vote
1answer
932 views

'Rollover'/'Roll over' in computer world

While Oxford Dictionary of English does not have definition of rollover, Wiktionary defines this word as "a graphic element that changes its shape or colour when the cursor moves over it"; in other ...
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5answers
186 views

“Printfing” or “printingf”?

At this point the program starts printfing the pot value. At this point the program starts printingf the pot value. Both sound wrong, and yet... one of them must be used.
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3answers
95 views

Word for code/applications that call an API library

I have an API library, what do I call code/applications that use it? I want to avoid "client" because in my context, it is ambiguous with another concept. Also it doesn't have to be a single word, as ...