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I've been very interested in this word for a couple of decades, and I keep waiting for it to appear in English, but I can't find any uses. Has anyone come across this word? The closest I can find is "cryptostylis".


Part of the impetus for this question is I'm using it in my profile, and concerned people may not take the meaning. I interpret it as: (1) a person who uses technology to separate themselves from the material world; (2) a computer nerd; (3) one who uses technology to remain hidden from the world, i.e. "blackhats".

I'm certainly not using it in a pejorative sense, though my assumption is it would be taken that way by non-techs.

The medieval stylites were ascetics who famously sat on pillar in pursuit of spiritual goals. In the post-computing era, these goals become technological.

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    Some people might appreciate your nonce word (which won't be a true word according to some definitions). But why would people assume that the goals of stylites had switched from spiritual ones to technological? The answer below doesn't demand that reading. Many people might not appreciate your nonce word. – Edwin Ashworth Jun 29 '17 at 15:59
  • @EdwinAshworth I appreciate your input. Although I don't think there are many active stylites in the modern world, crypto is used to connote computing in the sense of encoding information for procedural purposes. – DukeZhou Jun 29 '17 at 16:04
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    But deciding to push productivity by prefixing an accepted word with crypto- is an English not a computing device. You haven't found 'Cryptostylite' (with or without a hyphen) in 20 years. I haven't found it. You're worried that people may not take a meaning you'd like for a word you're making up, which meaning doesn't correspond with the normal rules of word formation. I'll have to close-vote as off-topic. – Edwin Ashworth Jun 29 '17 at 16:21
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    This question does not appear to be about English language and usage within the scope defined in the help center. 'Is this in the lexicon, and if so does it have meaning ...?' might work. – Edwin Ashworth Jun 29 '17 at 16:23
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    The word you might be looking for is Introvert. See for example How Technology and Social Media Empower the Introvert. Very few people (well, one at least) would interpret cryptostlist to mean the 3 part definition that you gave. – MikeJRamsey56 Jun 29 '17 at 17:24
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Crypto- is a combining form so it is legitimate to prefix it to other words. The "o" is the combining vowel. Medical terms make much use of combining forms. So if you want to be a secret stylite then have at it.

  • Nice. I beleive crypto may have a wider meaning than the formal definition in that "information technologies" are "syntactic systems", in the sense that all computer instructions are a form of "code". "Encoding" is widely used in a sense that does not imply subterfuge. – DukeZhou Jun 29 '17 at 15:53
  • Some would consider that poetry :-) – MikeJRamsey56 Jun 29 '17 at 15:57
  • Thanks! I also want to add that the meaning you propose is also correct, in that a subset of "crypostylites" do use the information technologies to remain hidden, generally what are known as "blackhats", so I very much appreciate your analysis. :) – DukeZhou Jun 29 '17 at 16:00
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    @DukeZhou ELU deals with established usage in English. Your question is miles away from that. – Edwin Ashworth Jun 29 '17 at 16:01
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    @EdwinAshworth he is just having fun with the English language. I wish more people would. And his question, viewed as a question on combining forms, strikes me as legitimate. But I am new here so I will defer to your greater experience. – MikeJRamsey56 Jun 29 '17 at 16:16

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