This tag is for questions related to definitions and nuances of meaning of a word or phrase.

learn more… | top users | synonyms (6)

1
vote
1answer
48 views

'eat extra two apples' or 'eat additional two apples'?

Should I say 'We want to eat extra two apples' or 'We want to eat additional two apples' ? OR both are correct? Any other suggestions are welcome. Thanks.
1
vote
2answers
45 views

Making a sentence feel more welcoming and less stressful

I have the following sentence: Increase your rating as you develop your coding skills while you evaluate the skills of other developers. However, I now realize that this sentence is a bit off ...
0
votes
1answer
42 views

What does 'chicken littling' mean when used as a verb?

Example - this tweet: ...especially given the reliance of these pundits on phony drama, false equivalence, trolling and chicken littling, and horse race gossip. I've skimmed the wikipedia page ...
3
votes
2answers
35 views

Clarifications on the meaning of split

Can someone tell me the meaning of the word "split" in a part of a sentence that I read on a certain book which I don't remember anymore. Part of the sentence that I recall is: his death came at a ...
4
votes
1answer
32 views

Difference in meaning: “diplomacy” and “foreign affairs”?

In a general context, is there any difference in meaning or tone between "diplomacy" and "foreign affairs"? Consider the following case. (at a speech) I will talk about effects the TPP (Trans Pacific ...
8
votes
2answers
199 views

Definitions of the word “delete” vs. public understanding of the word?

I just asked a question on User Experience SE, involving the word delete. This English question is based on that UX question, so its motive can be understood better by reading both questions. It ...
-1
votes
0answers
36 views

What does “XX NNNNN” mean in American Address formant? [closed]

For example "TX 76119". I know TX is for Texas, but what does the number refer to?
1
vote
2answers
48 views

What does Megyn Kelly “dished about” her battle with sb. and “spilled dirt about” her colleagues mean?

Vanity Fair (May 17) carried an article titled, “Megyn Kelly calls out Fox News colleagues for not supporting her.” There was the following line: Appearing on Bravo’s Watch What Happens Live — a ...
1
vote
2answers
66 views

What does “Snopesian” mean?

I ran into this word while reading J. Mitchell Morse’s The Irrelevant English Teacher. Here’s the full sentence it came from: The Snopesian quality of the Nixon administration is nowhere more ...
1
vote
0answers
39 views

“cross drafts ahoy” meaning

In the 4th episode of the 3rd season of Silicon Valley HBO show, the following dialog happens between the landlord and a guy who want to rent a room: Guy : Uh, this is not even a room. This is a ...
1
vote
0answers
41 views

“These kids I tell you” or “kids I tell you” expression meaning

I have read them in few disconnected articles and in conversations but could not understand them completely. "These kids I tell you" or "kids I tell you" expression meaning. What do they mean ?
4
votes
1answer
87 views

What does “bucking traffic” mean?

I believe buck, in this context, means fight. So this would mean fighting traffic. When one refers to traffic, it can be described as having a flow, so to fight it would be to go against it. Or, it ...
4
votes
1answer
37 views

Should I use “prosthetics” or “prostheses” for a plural noun?

Just looking around google, it appears that "prosthetics" as a plural noun is used in non-technical marketing literature, while "prostheses" is used in technical journals. Is there any difference in ...
0
votes
0answers
36 views

The meaning of “What a bum rap” [closed]

I got that words from novel. I've been looking for the meaning but still can't get what it means. Is that kind of slang? "Hi, Mr.Tushman! I see you're running a little behind today! Did your car get ...
-1
votes
1answer
36 views

The usage of “could” and “can” in questions [duplicate]

Which of the following is more appropriate? Can you go? Could you go? Is there anything wrong in asking like this "Could you go?"
45
votes
5answers
7k views

Around how old is “a woman of a certain age”?

"A woman of a certain age" is a common saying. It means more than "a woman of a given age", "a woman who could be any age" or "female, without respect to age". It's usage instead seems to suggest a ...
0
votes
0answers
26 views

Meaning of “still” in “still others”

I frequently see the expression "still others." I guess here still means "another" or "again." Am I correct? Example sentence : Other animals avoid predators by running, swimming, or flying away ...
-1
votes
1answer
47 views

When did ‘swipe’ change from meaning “to steal” to being used in transactions?

If I had said, "He swiped my card!" long ago, everyone would have been looking for a thief. Now it is synonymous with a sale transaction. (Can you swipe your own card? Yes, in fact you do!) I guess if ...
1
vote
0answers
23 views

“ that was a classic money handshake”

I'm reading the play "Dumb Show" by Joe Penhall. (See on Google Books) almost in the begining of the play one of the characters uses this phrase" classic money handshake". What does it mean? " ...
1
vote
2answers
67 views

How did “on the house” become a synonym of “free”?

question as in the subject. Noticed such an expression at least in two occasions...
1
vote
1answer
48 views

“impairment” vs. “impediment” (and derivatives)

Today I wrote the phrase "free from any procedural impediments" and am wondering how the meaning would change if I instead wrote "free from any procedural impairments." What is the difference ...
1
vote
1answer
39 views

Heady - Does this word mean what I think it means?

When I look up the word "heady" in the dictionary, it seems that the main definition is "tending to intoxicate." Farther down, "having an exhilarating effect" and "intellectually demanding" are also ...
1
vote
1answer
19 views

What is a co-pay card?

What is a co-pay card? It's out only used with respect to pharmaceutical matters? The Wikipedia says so, but I need your comments to find the answer.
7
votes
2answers
834 views

Foul language vs. vulgar language [closed]

I have been able to find the differences between many pairs of words/phrases of similar meaning on Stack Exchange except for one — vulgar language and foul language. Could anyone shed some light on ...
0
votes
2answers
58 views

What did H.L. Mencken mean when he wrote this? [closed]

Most people are unable to write because they are unable to think, and they are unable to think because they congenitally lack the equipment to do so, just as they congenitally lack the equipment to ...
2
votes
2answers
40 views

How restrictive should be the use of “start-up”? [closed]

What newly created companies are "start-ups"? According to the dictionary definition it is "A business or undertaking that has recently begun operation." But, shouldn't we restrict the use to ...
0
votes
0answers
25 views

What is the meaning of “modulo”? [duplicate]

What is the meaning of “modulo” in this context sent by my supervisor. "The section (of a research paper in linguistics) is Okay, modulo few mistakes"?
13
votes
12answers
413 views
+50

Synonym for “Blind Spot”

I'm looking for a term or an idiom to point to the weakness of something, specifically a computer program. Something similar to "Achilles Heel" but not that! I just found blind spot : "an area in ...
2
votes
1answer
31 views

“Unless” at the end of the sentence

I was just wondering what does it mean when people use of the word "unless" at the end of the sentence. As far as I know, I only hear people say something like "Unless you work hard, you will fail." ...
0
votes
2answers
30 views

Meaning of “for good and often for ill”

I came across this statement: "Both Plato and Aristotle speak of music as "imitating" or "representing" the characters and passionate tones of men, but seem to suggest that the end for which this ...
0
votes
1answer
30 views

achieve a contract vs win a contract

I am wondering if my understanding of these two phrases is correct. Could you confirm this? make a contract = create a contract achieve a contract = win a contract Thank you.
0
votes
1answer
31 views

The meaning of the 'enclosure' word

I can't understand the meaning of the word 'enclosure' in the context: "This client reads one or more RSS feeds, queues up the enclosures for download, and processes several downloads in parallel ...
2
votes
2answers
48 views

The “infelicities of language” means?

What does "the infelicities of language" mean ? Infelicities means "inappropriate and unpleasing manner or style". So, is the phrase "infelicities of language" a euphemism for curse words ? Or is the ...
1
vote
2answers
66 views

What does “racking in cash” mean? [on hold]

What does it mean to "rack in some serious cash"? Does it mean to make money quickly and making loads of cash?
2
votes
1answer
86 views

Please, explain the joke about a walkie talkie

Q. What do you get when you cross a parrot and a caterpillar? A. A walkie talkie. What feature of caterpillars was chosen to create this joke? As far as I know a walkie talkie is a device ...
1
vote
2answers
24 views

meaning of traceurs [closed]

According to dictionaries the exponents of parkour are called traceurs, meaning tracers of urban textures and contours. But, does "tracer" here mean "drawer, plotter, and designer" or "follower and ...
0
votes
3answers
71 views

Meaning of profane phrase. “S don't mean s.”

I'm reading Finders Keepers by Stephen King. Does anyone know what "Shit don't mean shit" means?
4
votes
3answers
69 views

What is the adjective for this kind of presentation of data?

For example, one can state Jane is a student. She is 20 years old. Jane likes swimming and reading. Jane's closest friends are Carmen, Mia and Alison. Otherwise, this can be stated as Name: ...
2
votes
0answers
23 views

What is the word for accepting help from someone else, not by merit, but because they know you? [duplicate]

So, say that someone is about to start at a new school, and your sister says "Oh, I aced that class! Let me introduce you to the teacher; maybe he'll give you less homework/give you more ...
1
vote
0answers
42 views

Why does House Speaker Paul Ryan keep saying he's encouraged? [closed]

“We are now planting the seeds to get ourselves unified,” Mr. Ryan said. “I was very encouraged with this meeting, but this is a process. It takes a little time.” What information Paul Ryan ...
0
votes
1answer
41 views

How to use “Come true”

I'm from Italy and my mother-tongue is not English,so sorry in advance for my mistakes. This is my question: I know the sentence "Wish my dreams come true", but can I use "come true" in other ...
0
votes
1answer
39 views

What does “There's got to be more to you” mean? [closed]

from song Violet Indiana-air kissing.
2
votes
1answer
44 views

“Effective” in the beginning of a sentence?

What does "effective" mean if used at the beginning of a sentence? e.g. "Effective ____________________ , your child may not return to school until proof of immunizations has been sent to the ...
-1
votes
2answers
59 views

monochromatic personality

Who exactly has a monochromatic personality? I haven't got a reasonable explanation using Google, therefore I am asking the community. The best one I got was from Urban Dictionary, but this isn't a ...
2
votes
0answers
38 views

A word describing a skilful footballer

Is there a common word describing a footballer who skilfully dribbles the ball and get past defenders easily?
2
votes
0answers
41 views

precondition + for / of / to - what's the difference?

This is my first post ever on this valuable forum! I'm at a loss, since I'm supposed correct students' exams, and I started doubting the grammar book's normatively exclusive use of the combination ...
0
votes
0answers
7 views

Another than, Different than [migrated]

Is it correct to say : You can save images to a different folder than videos, meaning images should be stored in one folder and videos in a different folder. Or should I say You can save images to a ...
-1
votes
1answer
34 views

Free for common use

Can I say that an application is Free for common use? meaning everyone has access to all features and can use it free of charge unless s/he needs to use it on a large scale. This would require a paid ...
1
vote
1answer
44 views

One who loves science

Would I be off base if I suggested (or created) the word "sciophile"? Meaning "one who loves science".
5
votes
2answers
94 views

Is the word “pathology” used only for “disease”?

I wanted to ask about the exact meaning of pathology. Is it just for disease or can we use it for other things? I mean, for example, if I want to talk about the determination of harms in culture or ...