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The Tech Jargon You Need to Know

by Jacqui Harig

technology

The beginning of the 21st century is constantly seeing an uptick in new inventions, especially in the world of technology. Each day consists of a new product, new update, new craze or new idea. From cookies (not the ones you eat) to apps (also not the ones you eat) and everywhere in between, it may be a little tricky remembering all this tech jargon correctly.

Thanks to Jigsaw and The Washington Post, keeping all the lingo straight just got a whole lot easier. Their Sideways Dictionary is the first ever online dictionary designed specifically for the tech industry. It uses creative analogies and layman’s terms to explain different tech jargon.

Here at BIGfish, we dabble in the tech-industry, especially with some of our clients like Petnet, Ring and Nightingale. Here are the words we think you need to know, written in ways we can all actually understand (and remember), thanks to The Washington Post:

  • App: It’s like a corkscrew. A corkscrew does one job (an important job, in this case) really well. Meanwhile, a browser is like a Swiss Army Knife – an all-purpose tool that lets you do a lot of different things to a basic level.
  • Bug: It’s like the Leaning Tower of Pisa, which looked straight enough for the first five years but began to lean when a bug in the original design became clear. The foundations were only three meters deep in soil that was notoriously weak and unstable. Unfortunately, most software bugs don’t turn into lucrative tourist attractions.
  • Cache: It’s like a personal journal of everywhere you visit and everything you do online. It all gets recorded automatically in the background and, just like your journal in real life, you can always erase the entries.
  • Cookie: It’s like a barista with a good memory. So every morning when you come in for your decaf soy latte with an extra shot and cream, they nod wearily and say, “the usual?”
  • Encryption: It’s like sending a sealed letter instead of a postcard. To ban encryption would be like requiring all mail to be sent as postcards, including bank statements, medical letters and holiday photos. Your postman, neighbors and postal service would soon know you pretty well.
  • HTTP: It’s like living in a glass house. With HTTP, you have to bear in mind everything is unencrypted and theoretically open for others to see. That’s fine for some activities, but gets awkward with others. With HTTPS, you can draw the curtains and close the shutters.
  • Hacking: It’s like going into someone’s house without permission. You may be up to no good or you may be letting them know there are flames coming out of the roof.
  • IP Address: It’s like a postal address for the internet. This is a numeric address that identifies where a destination computer is attached to the Internet, similar to a postal address for a destination residence or business.
  • Phishing: It’s like a fake ATM that prints out an error message when you try to use it, but in the meantime has taken your credit card details and pin number.
  • Virus: It’s like crabgrass. The weed infects your beautiful lawn, along with other weeds, growing everywhere. It’s ruining your garden, driveway and patio. Trojan is a type of virus and the only way to remove it is with some weedkiller.
  • Wiki: It’s like a hotel visitor book. As opposed to a hotel brochure, the content is made up entirely of public contributions.

Think you know better than Sideways? Their website allows you to submit your own definitions, and lets other users vote on which they think is most accurate. What tech terms do you think are the most vital for your everyday life? Tweet us at @BIGfishPR!

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