Your Internet Consultant - The FAQs of Life Online

11.2. What does that acronym stand for?

The online world is filled with cryptic abbreviations and acronyms. Many of these arise out of a need to save time, a desire to type fewer characters, or laziness or pure silliness. Below is a partial list of acronyms you'll see on the Internet (especially on the Usenet, MUDs, and IRC) and their translations. Of course, you'll also find terms such as RAM, CD-ROM, and SCSI, but these computer terms were born in laboratory test tubes, not in cyberspace.

While researching this answer, I ran across a posting by Dan Hofferth, who sums up the acronym problem nicely: "BTW, FWIW, I once saw an amusing (IMHO) summary of common e-mail abbreviations somewhere on Internet. Apparently, it has been long forgotten or nobody RTFM. IAE, I kept thinking that I'd repost it again, RSN, to cut down on these FAQ's re: TLAs. Guess I could summarize now. If, after reading it, you find that you are SITD, remember that TANSTAAFL."

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