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Latest lingo in the tech lexicon

Whether you’re in financing, consumer electronics, software or any other tech-dependent industry, you’ve probably encountered a fair share of questionable tech and web terminology – and equally quirky company names and apps. While you may know what it does in your calculation, for your mobile gadget or for your favorite internet game, have you ever considered what it is exactly? Like past installments of tech lingo, however, some of these are so unfamiliar that even techies proceed with caution. Here is some of the latest or most unique lingo bouncing around the tech lexicon.

Anti-poopsocking v. A movement toward incorporating features into video games to prevent users from getting so addicted to their gaming that they’d rather “poop in a sock” than to get up and go to the bathroom.

Bitcoin n. A peer-to-peer payment system that, although it does not meet the generally recognized definition of money, is not controlled by a single entity and is mostly unregulated, works as an alternative to paying with credit cards online. Introduced in 2009, this digital currency has been increasingly embraced and accepted by businesses and customers alike because there are not transaction fees, credit card fees or foreign exchange fees, and can easily be transferred yet untraced.

dog-fooding n. A slang tech term used in reference to a company using its own product (often software) to demonstrate the capabilities of the product or work out its bugs.

fashion fingerprinting n. A concept of identifying people – even when their faces aren’t visible – simply by the clothes they are wearing. The human-recognition system, which was primarily designed for Google Glass, aims to help users find their friends (or vice versa) in a crowd. A series of photos taken by the associated smartphone app allow it to analyze color, texture and pattern combinations to help identify people at odd angles or from far distances.

gamification n. An interactive marketing method that uses gaming technology, particularly on consumer websites and mobile sites, to encourage people to connect and interact with the applications.

hashtag abuse n. When social media users include hashtags with random or complex words or phrases that will not likely be used or searched by others, defeating the original purpose of using them in social networks to organize and link common topics across users. Hashtag abuse also comprises social media posts with numerous tagged words per post (i.e. >3) or excessively long hashtags.

Morphee n. A term for a flexible smartphone that can autonomously reshape according to what its user is doing on the device, e.g. morphing into a game controller-like shape when playing video games; the concept was develop by a team of computer scientist from the University of Bristol, UK.

never-connecteds n. A term coined by Wired for the approximately 5 million US households that watch TV and other entertainment over the internet instead of through a cable or satellite subscription. Examples of platforms include Netflix, Hulu, YouTube and more.

Skitch app. An iOS-based app developed by the folks behind Evernote that lets the user amend a PDF or give a stamp of approval (or disapproval).

Summly app. A website and smartphone app (launched by founder Nick D’Aloisio in 2011) that uses algorithms to generate summaries of thousands of sources; produces a summarized version of a news article optimized for a smartphone.

sunsetting v. Also called application retirement or decommissioning, it’s most often used in a business context, and even more specifically referring to hardware or software, to mean intentionally phasing out or terminating an unprofitable system or product or an obsolete business application.

p-hacking n. The process of manipulating (perhaps unknowingly) the process of statistical analysis.

user-generated content (UGC) n. Media content published on the web that was provided by a open collaboration of unpaid contributors. Part of the shift toward Web 2.0 and social media, UCG gives consumers, web users and amateurs alike a voice in the publishing, advertising and marketing worlds. In addition to social networks, examples of platforms include review sites, blogs, podcasts, sharing sites and open-source software.

Wi-Vi n. A Wi-Fi-based system similar to radar and sonar imaging that uses transmitted Wi-Fi signals to “see through” walls and closed doors by tracking people’s movement as the signals reflect off of them.

Terms and definitions were compiled and summarized from sources including Wired, NetLingo and Wikipedia.