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Nothing earns my ire more than the injudicious use of acronyms. Why people insist that everyone know their favorites instead of simpy spelling them out is a total mystery. Surely the subject line isn't all that short. I fully expect to see a LSE promoted under the title MWLSTSHAOMAPAOEMLCOGRS. No doubt you'll have no trouble decifering that one. Maybe MLS should have a GA.:)

Mark
 

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Mark,
You do know what an acronym is don't you?;)

Using the first letter of a number of words to form another word is only an acronym if the word so derived is actually pronounceable as a word.  Such as with SCUBA.

MLS is not an acronym.  
It is an initialism.
 

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Posted By MarkLewis on 01/12/2008 3:39 PM
Nothing earns my ire more than the injudicious use of acronyms. Why people insist that everyone know their favorites instead of simpy spelling them out is a total mystery.

Mark
You have definitely stuck a sympathetic chord with me. I run into the use of these acronyms and other word-short-cuts all over the internet and thus I often feel left out in the dark.

Although I occasionally use  abbreviations for some of the commonly-used railroad lines and certain localities and even one particular old television series, I also try to make a point of writing these out FIRST so there is no doubt for instance that AKRR means Alaska Railroad or that NX stands for Northern Exposure. That is simply common courtesy.

My Regards, Ron at the CRD  in CC AK, home of the CRNW Ry

oops, that's "the Copper Rail Depot in Copper Center, Alaska, home of the
Copper River & Northwestern Railway"
 

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You do know that ACRONYM is an acronym itself?

A Coded Rendition Of Names Yielding Meaning.

The plural of which is ACRONYMS which is an acronym of

A Coded Rendition Of Names Yielding Meaning Sometimes.

The more you use, the less chance of any of them being meaningful.
 

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w? u dnt understnd the new slang? 2 txt u btr figur out quick! my peeps shoot me these deets all time. thnkflly bsitter fills me in on all the new. she is always lol at me she like wtf!?! then she rofl as she txt her bff to drop the deets on me. well talk 2u lates.

Translation: What? You don't understand the new slang? To text you better figure it out quick. My friends send me these all the time. Thankfully the babysitter fills me in on all the new stuff. She is always laughing out loud at me and saying what the @*%$? Then she is rolling on the floor laughing as she texts her best friend forever to drop the details on me. Well talk to you later.
 

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I couldn't agree more. Acronyms and abbreviations are on my hit list. The time they are supposed to save in writing or the ink saved in printing them, is lost ten fold in trying to figure out what they mean.
 

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Posted By TonyWalsham on 01/12/2008 4:25 PM
Mark,
You do know what an acronym is don't you?;)

Using the first letter of a number of words to form another word is only an acronym if the word so derived is actually pronounceable as a word.  Such as with SCUBA.

MLS is not an acronym.  
It is an initialism.
"Contrary to what some sources say, acronyms do not have to be pronounceable words (for example FBI is spelled out when spoken, whereas NASA is not). Some sources use the word initialism to refer to the spelled acronyms." (from "The Internet Acronym Server"),  the link being credited to Bob Sorenson in the previous post.

However, I do recall from my days in the military, that all our acronyms were pronounceable (for good reason--we used them extensively in place of the spelled out version). The military, as you know, loves acronymns.


--Ron in CC
 

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The computer industry is infamous for them too.  My all time favorite is PCMCIA..  I still couldn't tell you what the real meaning is, but the fun one is "People Can't Memorize Computer Industry Acronyms".    We've got a ton of them here at work lately, all related to different IT projects and initiatives going on.  PAGE, UBF, CRF, BML, I get confused and make the project managers give me a refresher course every time we have a meeting.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
There are also the US Military words, compounded from the first syllable of a long string of designators. I once replied to a letter from one of those insane strings, and my secretray completed the letter and then wrote another version in which all the words in the letter were cut to their initial syllables and strung together. It was surprisingly easy to read.

Not quite as easy as: USMILWORCOMSYLDES.:)

Mark
 

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Wait a minute , since when are text messages to blame? Man thats just FUBAR, should have known everything was SNAFU.

Hehehe
 

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Posted By TonyWalsham on 01/14/2008 4:12 PM


Ron,


It looks like we are both right.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acronym scroll down to nomenclature.

Although I am inclined to agree with your narrower definition, it is a sign of the times that precise word meanings have an unsettling way of subtly changing over a relatively short period of time. Because of my own military background, your definition better fits my own understanding of the word, but now the definition appears to have expanded as evidenced in my previous post on this subject.

Speaking of acronyms, how can you miss the name of my own Phase II railroad line: The Alaska-Canadian Northern Expo Consolidated Railways System, aka ALCAN-EX, or, better yet, ALCAN EX-CON.  Now those are true acronyms! 
 

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I'm with Tony and his original opinion on this one--despite what the internet, that font of (mis)information, says. Ya can't make a word out of FBI (fbeeeye?) or CEO (seeoh?).
 

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Posted By blackburn49 on 01/14/2008 2:56 PM
Posted By TonyWalsham on 01/12/2008 4:25 PM
Mark,
You do know what an acronym is don't you?;)

Using the first letter of a number of words to form another word is only an acronym if the word so derived is actually pronounceable as a word.  Such as with SCUBA.

MLS is not an acronym.  
It is an initialism.
"Contrary to what some sources say, acronyms do not have to be pronounceable words (for example FBI is spelled out when spoken, whereas NASA is not). Some sources use the word initialism to refer to the spelled acronyms." (from "The Internet Acronym Server"),  the link being credited to Bob Sorenson in the previous post.

However, I do recall from my days in the military, that all our acronyms were pronounceable (for good reason--we used them extensively in place of the spelled out version). The military, as you know, loves acronymns.


--Ron in CC


Your right.  The military is full of them.  Any military I guess.  This is especially the case in the ATC (Air Traffic Control) world.   I made a concerted effort to cleans myself of these as soon as I retired but my wife did not.  Fifteen years later she still drives me absolutely crazy when she talks to people she has just met.  Blank looks all around and I'm trying to translate without making her, or the new guy, embarrassed.  

Funny though.  We used to say things were TU when they didn't work.  I still use that at work from time to time - by mistake - and now people there are using it as well.  'course there is plenty of opportunity in that place..../DesktopModules/NTForums/themes/mls/emoticons/w00t.gif:rolleyes:

Dave
 

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Posted By dawinter on 01/14/2008 5:47 PM

Your right.  The military is full of them.  Any military I guess.  .  .

Funny though.  We used to say things were TU when they didn't work.  I still use that at work from time to time - by mistake - and now people there are using it as well.  'course there is plenty of opportunity in that place....

Dave



Yes, it must be something that was permanently drilled into us as junior officers. After all, here I am creating new acronyms like AFNOR and ALCAN EX-CON like it is second nature for me.

And to think at the time I left the military, like you, I had enough of acronyms. Some things just won't die even when you're sure you drove a stake through its heart. Good grief. It's a bit unsettling, isn't it?

--Ron in CC
 

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In 1945,while in the Navy, I was introduced to acronyms, RADAR and SONAR are fine examples, both pronounceable as ALL TRUE acronyms are. F B I are simply initials; it is not an acronym even tho wiikipedia, a rather spurious 'source', might think it is. A college student can't use wikipedia as a source in any paper from what my two daughters, college graduates, tell me.

Art
 
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