26/08/2016

Notable words, he loved language


  • Dedekind cut (n.)  A partition of a ordered list into two nonempties, such that everything in the first sublist is less than every member of the second sublist, and such that the first contains no greatest element. Used in the rigorous definition of the reals. As "an infinitely thin thing", also used in the following burn from Wilfrid Sellars:
    The crux of a philosophical argument often appears to be a Dedekind cut between a series of 'as I will show's and a series of 'as I have shown's.

  • Popperazzi (pej. pl. n.)  Term of contempt for people who use Karl Popper's falsifiability criterion in a simplistic or inaccurate manner.

  • juke (East Coast US v.)   To massage or dredge or miscode data. (As in "juke the stats": police coding robberies as thefts in The Wire.)   Maybe some connection to the Chicago genre of cheap fast dance music, juke (incomparable adj.)   See also cook the books, creative accounting.

  • loggia (Italian n.)  A covered terrace, or, a half-open room. As seen facing the garden in elegant villas.

  • lede (n.)  The first line of a news article.

  • data fumes (n.)  Poor-quality initial evidence in a new field. This is a problem because of human anchoring distorting the later shape of the field, and because later dramatic corrections of the 'fumes falsely undermine confidence in the mature science. See dietary science for a miserable instance. Coined by Bostrom.

  • the ABEGHHK’tH mechanism (). Peter Higg's suggested name for what has come to be called the Higgs mechanism: the symmetry-break that gives certain bosons mass; since the W and Z bosons are the force carriers for the weak nuclear force, the Higgs mechanism is thus the thing which allows a moving, spacious universe, since otherwise, with massless W/Z bosons, the weak nuclear force would lock everything down. In full: "the Anderson-Brout-Englert-Guralnik-Hagen-Higgs-Kibble-'t Hooft mechanism".

  • σοφόν, sophon (Ancient Greek n.)  Wise one. (Gender neutral)

  • ἀγαθόν, agathon (Ancient Greek n.)  The Good One. (The surname of the only nonspeciesist in Battlestar Galactica)

  • sophos! (Latin adv.)   Bravo!

  • ἰδιώτης, idiotes (Ancient Greek n.)  Person not involved in politics; pleb; layman; idiot. This is nasty enough, but consider that anything ἴδιος (that is, anything personal, private, and specific) was more generally impugned in that culture. (So too your idiolect, your idiosyncracies); conformity.

  • Coapie (NE Scots n.)  Branch of Co-Operative Food.

  • haole (Hawaiian n.)  Slur for a white person.

  • чурок, churok (Russian n.)  Slur for a Central Asian person.

  • Linuxen (pl. n.)  Distributions of Linux, a la 'oxen'.

  • Shared nothing architecture ()  Notable just for its bizarre grammar.

  • pulsatile (adj.)  

  • Auslan (n.)  Australian Sign Language. Really wish someone would unify all these already.

  • oogle (n.)  A fake crusty. In New Orleans it has leaked into its opposite meaning, real gutter punk.

  • punitivism (n.)  Ugly jargon for an ugly thing: the popular appetite for harsh criminal punishments, regardless of harshness' overall effect on society. Also covers the usually evidence-free policies that come in to sate it.




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