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DONGLE

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DONGLE

Postby Slava » Thu Aug 18, 2011 7:36 pm

Today's Good Word:

Dr. Goodword wrote:• dongle •

Pronunciation: dông-gêl • Hear it!

Part of Speech: Noun

Meaning: 1. A piece of hardware that must be plugged into a computer port in order for a copyrighted piece of software to operate on the computer. Its purpose is to protect the software from unauthorized use. 2. An adapter that fits into a computer port to provide a function or connection the computer is not fitted for.

Notes: Dongles in the original sense are still used for high-end (high-priced) engineering software where the temptation to "borrow" the program is the greatest. However, no doubt because of the sound similarity of this word and dangle, the meaning has already shifted to something that dangles from your laptop or desk computer. None of our tech guys have heard this new word used as a verb, so the only variant we know of at this point is the plural, dongles.

In Play: Putting this word in play sounds rather dangerous but here goes nothing: "Mick Stupp is off line today because he lost his dongle; he needs it for his Internet connection." Where can we go with this word from here? I don't think we will ever greet friends with, "How are your dongles dangling?" So, this word will probably never be used outside Nerdish: "I do love you, Amanda, but you make me feel more like a dongle than a major card on your motherboard." (Did you just moan or was that Shakespeare turning over in his grave?)

Word History: Today's Good Word has a very short history that left us no breadcrumbs to follow. It is easy to see that this word might have been an intentional variant pronunciation of dangle. However, as the definitions above make clear, the original dongles didn't dangle. In all probability, the word was made up, then gained wider currency as dongles did begin to dangle and the word made more sense to the general population. (We won't leave you dangling any longer: Patricia Castellanos was the person kind enough to suggest today's Good Word.)
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Postby scw1217 » Mon Aug 22, 2011 2:00 pm

Loved your sentence examples for this one! Had a good laugh.
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Postby LukeJavan8 » Tue Aug 30, 2011 12:10 pm

Computers surely have spawned their own lingo:
dongle, yahoo, bing, google, and the despicable
phrase for everything: LOL. Yuk.
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Postby Perry Lassiter » Tue Aug 30, 2011 11:20 pm

I assume, then, Luke that yuk is superior to lol?
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Postby LukeJavan8 » Wed Aug 31, 2011 12:05 pm

On another site there is a fellow who says "heh" when
he wants to show his amusement to a previous post,
and I respond with various "yuk" or "yukker".
Superior to LOL, not really: to me that means
"Loser on the Lose".
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Postby bamaboy56 » Mon Sep 05, 2011 1:40 pm

I'm a little late getting in on this discussion. I was amused by this word because it took me back to my former life as a court reporter. My stenograph machine had an integrated floppy disk where the shorthand strokes were recorded, as well as the paper record that could be used for immediate readback if needed. Whenever I returned to the office to transcribe my notes, I had to plug a dongle into a USB port on my computer in order to use the shorthand translation software I used (a program called "Maestro"). I don't remember ever referring to the device as a "dongle", though. I believe I would have remembered that! Most likely I referred to it as "that computer thingey". Knowing the female court reporters I worked with (which made up the majority of the court reporters in the office), they would have had a field day talking about having to "plug in dongles". :lol: I'll definitely have to keep this word in mind!
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Postby LukeJavan8 » Mon Sep 05, 2011 7:14 pm

Plug in dongles: cute, thanks for the experience you had.
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Postby Perry Lassiter » Mon Sep 05, 2011 11:48 pm

Does that mean then that Iphone cords you plug into the charger or computer a also "dongles"? By Jove!
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Postby LukeJavan8 » Tue Sep 06, 2011 1:10 pm

I don't speak computerese very much. Don't know the
names of things, but I find the terminology strange
and my computer spell check underlines all the terms:
google, bing, yahoo, dongle, ipod, etc.
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Postby bamaboy56 » Sun Sep 11, 2011 5:50 pm

Luke, probably underlines those words because they're not in your dictionary. I'm guessing once you use the "add to your dictionary" option, they won't be underlined anymore.
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Postby LukeJavan8 » Mon Sep 12, 2011 9:25 pm

I don't know much about computers only learned in '08
so I don't know how to go about that. Could you advise
please??
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Postby Perry Lassiter » Tue Sep 13, 2011 9:37 am

Right click on the underlined word. It should give you a series of choices. If the word seems correctly spelled, though underlined, then click on "add to dictionary." that should do it.
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Postby LukeJavan8 » Tue Sep 13, 2011 11:17 am

yahoo, bing, google,
WOW, learn something new everyday. Now that may
seem a simple procedure, but to someone who has
picked up all this just by trial and error, I am amazed
and VERY GRATEFUL. THANK YOU, VERY MUCH.
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Postby Perry Lassiter » Tue Sep 13, 2011 12:15 pm

You might experiment on most of the sites you visit and right click hre, there, and yonder. All sorts of things come up, or nothing. Try it a few times and find another aha moment.
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Postby LukeJavan8 » Tue Sep 13, 2011 12:54 pm

Will do!
Eureka may become a byword!
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