The symbol in e-mail addresses that separates the user’s name from the domain name. Credit for its first use goes to Ray Tomlinson, an engineer at Bolt, Beranek and Newman, an arpanet contractor. Tomlinson wrote the first e-mail programs for machines connected to Arpanet in 1972, choosing the @ symbol from the few available punctuation marks on his Model 33 Teletype and creating the internet’s most recognizable icon in the process.
Programmers and technicians use acronyms or abbreviations to reduce lengthy and complicated terms to manageable proportions. Some, when spelled out, are reasonably self-explanatory, such as gui (graphical user interface). Others, like corba (common object request broken architecture), are rather harder to visualize and remember.
Not all acronyms are technical. In newsgroups you may come across figures of speech such as imho (in my humble opinion) and iyswim (if you see what I mean). The popularity of chat, in particular, has stimulated the creation of many less useful examples. brb, for instance, is short for “be right back”, an indication that its author may have found something more useful to do.
- Web Browsers
- Essential Internet: The byte fantastic
- Internet for Your Needs
- Essential Internet: Speaking your language Part (3)
- Essential Internet: The Big Brand Part (2)