Is there a lexicon--on or offsite--of commonly used idioms hereabouts? December 5, 2001 10:31 AM   Subscribe

Is there a lexicon--on or offsite--of commonly used idioms hereabouts?
'Snarky' comes to mind, a word to which I took an instant disliking but the exact meaning of which still eludes me. Not being on the Net 'since we were programming Univacs with punch cards--or abaci with cuneiform tablets--etc.' and all that, it would be nice to know common usages...
I await the instant jpoulos response.
posted by y2karl to General Weblog-Related at 10:31 AM (46 comments total)

for chrissakes y2karl, haven't you ever heard of dictionary.com? I mean, come ooooon!



(the preceding was only an example, do not attempt to be this snarky to other people without the proper protection).
posted by mathowie (staff) at 10:38 AM on December 5, 2001


How about the New Hacker's Dictionary?
posted by arco at 10:39 AM on December 5, 2001


(Although I doubt "snarky" would be in that one. The definition in the Dictionary of American Slang for "snarky" is given as, "Irritable or touchy; from the British snark, 'to find fault, complain,' from the basic sense 'snort, snore'; of echoic origin, with cognates in many Germanic languages."

Working in a library is cool.)
posted by arco at 10:45 AM on December 5, 2001


for chrissakes y2karl, haven't you ever heard of dictionary.com?

Nuh uh--thanks!

: ::blush:: I never knew....


posted by y2karl at 10:52 AM on December 5, 2001


I stand corrected. "Snark" is in the "New Hacker's Dictionary," though it's an entirely different (more technical) definition:

snark n.
[Lewis Carroll, via the Michigan Terminal System] 1. A system failure. When a user's process bombed, the operator would get the message "Help, Help, Snark in MTS!" 2. More generally, any kind of unexplained or threatening event on a computer (especially if it might be a boojum). Often used to refer to an event or a log file entry that might indicate an attempted security violation. See snivitz. 3. UUCP name of snark.thyrsus.com, home site of the Jargon File versions from 2.*.* on (i.e., this lexicon).

posted by arco at 10:53 AM on December 5, 2001


For anyone who actually might be interested: Jargon and Netlingo, better yet, Logophilia for daily reinvention.
posted by Voyageman at 10:58 AM on December 5, 2001


Isn't Snark a submarine or something? Or am I freaking out?
posted by Kafkaesque at 11:20 AM on December 5, 2001




* cries *
posted by snarkout at 11:49 AM on December 5, 2001


Now see what you've done?
posted by iceberg273 at 11:50 AM on December 5, 2001


(And we hadn't even strated hunting the snark yet.)
posted by iceberg273 at 11:54 AM on December 5, 2001


The Petersen graph is a snark. (ref)
posted by gleuschk at 12:46 PM on December 5, 2001


Snarky, huh?
posted by y2karl at 12:58 PM on December 5, 2001


How long until MeFi jumps the snark?
posted by turaho at 1:26 PM on December 5, 2001


That happened when user 3344 signed up.
posted by perplexed at 1:33 PM on December 5, 2001


Snarky, huh?

That brings up another question is a justified snarky comment still a snarky comment? Perhaps its post-snarky or pre-pithy.
posted by skallas at 1:52 PM on December 5, 2001


OMIGOD! Rainbow Bright and Captain Snarklaw!!
posted by holloway at 2:12 PM on December 5, 2001


Late to the party....

I use "snark" as a verb--meaning to make a smartass or comment. "Sorry, I didn't mean to snark."
posted by jpoulos at 2:15 PM on December 5, 2001


a word to which I took an instant disliking

Aw, how can you dislike "snarky"? It is a wonderful and expressive word.

is a justified snarky comment still a snarky comment?

Sure.
posted by redfoxtail at 2:23 PM on December 5, 2001


Two more cents...

I have occasionally used a hybrid tag to indicate a combination of snarkiness and utter sarcasm:

<snarkasm>And I suppose just because you can't figure out MeFi idioms in context that I'm supposed to hold your hand.</snarkasm>
posted by eyeballkid at 2:26 PM on December 5, 2001


And here I was thinking snarks were those cute little bugs in Half-Life.
posted by Kafkaesque at 2:41 PM on December 5, 2001


snarf.
posted by lotsofno at 5:31 PM on December 5, 2001


< snarkasm>And I suppose just because you can't figure out MeFi idioms in context that I'm supposed to hold your hand.< /snarkasm>

Skookums is so pwecious!
posted by y2karl at 6:00 PM on December 5, 2001


karl, you're starting to freak me out dude. And I'm a pretty weird mammajamma to begin with.
posted by Kafkaesque at 7:05 PM on December 5, 2001


I don't suppose any of you cheap philistines has every considered investing 20 bucks in David Crystal's Language And The Internet, just out from the Cambridge University Press?
posted by MiguelCardoso at 7:17 PM on December 5, 2001


every: yes, that's right. Not even.
posted by MiguelCardoso at 7:19 PM on December 5, 2001


karl, if you call me Skookums again, we're gonna have to take it to MeTa... oh, wait, that's not right.
posted by eyeballkid at 7:51 PM on December 5, 2001


And I'm a pretty weird mammajamma to begin with.

bandwith, baby, bandwith--you're just not getting the whole broadcast...
posted by y2karl at 7:53 PM on December 5, 2001


I don't suppose any of you cheap philistines has every considered investing 20 bucks in David Crystal's Language And The Internet, just out from the Cambridge University Press?

Any reason why we should?

(Op-ed: Crystal apparently was born to make linguistics boring to the masses. This linguist says: best avoided.)
posted by rodii at 8:11 PM on December 5, 2001


"When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro."

-Hunter S. Thompson
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 8:12 PM on December 5, 2001


I think you could safely say that I'm not even on the same channel.
posted by Kafkaesque at 8:45 PM on December 5, 2001


::tear of pity for the ironically challenged::
posted by y2karl at 9:02 PM on December 5, 2001


> Skookums is so pwecious!

Hi! My name is Stewart! I totally love this site you guys have going! Anyway, here is a cool link!

FRIENDS ARE FOREVER

*singing: You're my honeybunch / Sugarplum / Pumby-ummy-umkin / You're my sweetie pie ...*
posted by sylloge at 10:23 PM on December 5, 2001


Crystal apparently was born to make linguistics boring to the masses. This linguist says: best avoided.

Whaddya mean? Undergraduates love the Cambridge Encyclopedia of Language!*

*not sarcasm
posted by redfoxtail at 3:44 AM on December 6, 2001


Roger's Profanisaurus doesn't have snarky, but who cares?
posted by pracowity at 3:49 AM on December 6, 2001


Undergraduates love the Cambridge Encyclopedia of Language!*

Boring, stodgy, anecdotal, British linguistics. *ppbt!*
posted by rodii at 6:00 AM on December 6, 2001


rodii - what would you suggest? I agree Crystal is stodgy - his recent Dictionary of World Languages(or something)had only short say-nothing entries - but what can we interested amateurs have at hand, without spending too much money?
We don't want to be linguists; just have a fair idea of what's going on. For ulterior purposes, mainly: semantics; philosophy of language; general curiosity; you know.
And Crystal's other books are, whether you like them or not, handy references for us outsiders.
(I had no idea, for instance, there was a difference between British and American linguistics).

So give us two or three titles, man!

posted by MiguelCardoso at 7:02 AM on December 6, 2001


We don't want to be linguists.

*cries*
posted by iceberg273 at 7:38 AM on December 6, 2001


Now look what I've done!
posted by MiguelCardoso at 7:42 AM on December 6, 2001


For ulterior purposes, mainly: semantics; philosophy of language; general curiosity; you know.

If I may be so rude, my humble suggestion would be either of the two books discussed here. (I like Jackendoff's better, but I'm biased. In any case the review itself is interesting.)

And a philosopher of language would dispute their value re: philosophy of language, but then if you've study the philosophy of language you probably think that's a good thing....
posted by mattpfeff at 7:44 AM on December 6, 2001


Cheers, mattpfeff!
posted by MiguelCardoso at 8:44 AM on December 6, 2001


Jackendoff!?!
*snigger*
posted by Catch at 11:34 AM on December 6, 2001


Mtt and I are as one on Jackendoff; Pinker I can't stand personally, but he does present modern ideas about language engagingly (if tendentiously). I guess as popular introductions go, those are good ones.

Miguel--there are differences between British and American traditions, but not so much that it's like two fields. I just meant Crystal has a certain stuffiness I associate with certain senior British linguists--and those are the ones that get the book contracts. Sorry to be unclear. However, there is one extremely good British popularizer: Jean Aitchison.
posted by rodii at 12:13 PM on December 6, 2001


Thanks, rodii. I don't like Pinker either - he's an evolutionary psychologist or something. Jean Aitchison I've heard of. She gets a lot of aggro for sticking with contemporary usage, doesn't she? I remember bitter exchanges in the London Review of Books.
So I'll be going with her, thanks. I was terrified you were going to say American linguists were more empirical and hardworking and direct me to the MIT website!
Hey, wait. What if I started a Chomsky thread to give you an opportunity to discuss this matter at the length it deserves? Would that help? :)
posted by MiguelCardoso at 12:20 PM on December 6, 2001


Follow up to Miguel: There's also a big difference between East Coast and West Coast linguists. Basically we (Chomskyites) look through a lens rooted in philosophy and logic (thank/curse Chomsky for that) and the West Coast is more interested in creating a theory that a computer can try out.

Oh, and the only thing bigger than Steve Pinker's ego is his hair. The man lectures his book example for example, same words out of his mouth every year. It has been observed. Maybe they've just made us a PinkerBot.
posted by phoenix enflamed at 8:15 PM on December 6, 2001


There's also a big difference between East Coast and West Coast linguists. Basically we (Chomskyites) look through a lens rooted in philosophy and logic (thank/curse Chomsky for that) and the West Coast is more interested in creating a theory that a computer can try out.

...speaking very, very, very broadly, of course.
posted by rodii at 8:27 AM on December 7, 2001


« Older Ranking most linked sites? Search posts by site?   |   long FPPs still happen Newer »

You are not logged in, either login or create an account to post comments