Geezer Lingo Banned

ADSGarson O'Toole adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Thu Jan 31 19:26:00 UTC 2013

Jonathan Lighter wrote
> Don't be retro, grampa:

The writer does identify some interesting examples of anachronistic
terminology. But the story also inadvertently illustrates the
difficulty of creating replacement names. It is rather early in the
year to start gathering entries for the American Dialect Society
category "Least Likely to Succeed", but the article contains a few

Stationary PC - alternative to desktop PC. For use with stationary
bicycles? Perhaps it has a chance. The ubiquity of mobile devices
might provide a niche for a retronym.

set-bottom box - alternative to set-top box. Clever but chance of
success is also near the bottom.

connected camera - alternative to Webcam. Remarkably ill-defined.

shooting - alternative to film (verb) for recording video. This is
already in use and hence has "succeeded". However, filming and
shooting are now both metaphors. Unless bullets are emerging from the
lens I think the anachronistic filming metaphor is superior. But it
may be discarded in the future.

pocket computer - alternative to smartphone. Wikipedia has an entry
for this term: "This specific category of computers existed primarily
in the 1980s." Revivifying a 1980s term will be difficult.

Stationary PC is being employed in the wild MoneyWatch
Date: April 22, 2010, 1:23 PM
Title: Apple iPad: Dawn of the Post-PC World?

[Begin excerpt]
Most of what consumers do with a laptop (or indeed with a stationary
PC) can be done easier with an iPad.
(End excerpt]


The American Dialect Society -

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