Saturday, March 31, 2012

Urbanization

Urbanization, urbanisation or urban drift is the physical growth of urban areas as a result of global change. Urbanization is also defined by the United Nations as movement of people from rural to urban areas with population growth equating to urban migration. The United Nations projected that half of the world's population would live in urban areas at the end of 2008.

Friday, March 30, 2012

poop deck


In naval architecture, a poop deck is a deck that forms the roof of a cabin built in the aft (rear) part of the superstructure of a ship.

The name originates from the French word for stern, la poupe, from Latin puppis. Thus the poop deck is technically called a stern deck, which in sailing ships was usually elevated as the roof of the stern or "after" cabin, also known as the "poop cabin". In sailing ships, with the helmsman at the stern, an elevated position was ideal for both navigation and observation of the crew and sails.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

quadrature


Mathematicians of Ancient Greece, according to the Pythagorean doctrine, understood calculation of area as the process of constructing geometrically a square having the same area (squaring). That is why the process was named quadrature. For example, a Quadrature of the circle, Lune of Hippocrates, The Quadrature of the Parabola. This construction must be performed only by means of compass and straightedge.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

prow


The prow is the forward most part of a ship's bow that cuts through the water. The prow is the part of the bow above the waterline. The terms prow and bow are often used interchangeably to describe the most forward part of a ship and its surrounding parts. In old naval parlance, the prow applied to the battery of guns placed in the fore gun-deck.

"Prow" may also refer to a pointed, projecting front part of other travelling objects, such as a racing skates, airplanes, or chariots.

"Prow" is also a climbing term that refers to an overhanging arete shaped like the front of a boat.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Subsistence

Subsistence is the action or fact of maintaining or supporting oneself at a minimum level.

Monday, March 26, 2012

skeg

A skeg (or skag) is a sternward extension of the keel of boats and ships which have a rudder mounted on the centre line. The term also applies to the lowest point on an outboard motor or the outdrive of an inboard/outboard. In more recent years, the name has been used for a fin on a surfboard which improves directional stability and to a moveable fin on a kayak which adjusts the boat's centre of lateral resistance. The term is also often used for the fin on water skis in the U.S.A.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

habitability

Planetary habitability is the measure of a planet's or a natural satellite's potential to sustain life. Life may develop directly on a planet or satellite or be transferred to it from another body, a theoretical process known as panspermia. As the existence of life beyond Earth is currently uncertain, planetary habitability is largely an extrapolation of conditions on Earth and the characteristics of the Sun and solar system which appear favorable to life's flourishing—in particular those factors that have sustained complex, multicellular organisms and not just simpler, unicellular creatures. Research and theory in this regard is a component of planetary science and the emerging discipline of astrobiology.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

tiller


A tiller or till is a lever attached to a rudder post (American terminology) or rudder stock (English terminology) of a boat that provides leverage for the helmsman to turn the rudder. The tiller is normally used by the helmsman directly pulling or pushing it, but it may also be moved remotely using tiller lines.

Friday, March 23, 2012

pilcrow


The pilcrow, also called the paragraph mark, paragraph sign, paraph, alinea (Latin: a linea, "off the line"), or blind P, is a typographical character commonly used to denote individual paragraphs.

The pilcrow can be used as an indent for separate paragraphs or to designate a new paragraph in one long piece of copy, as Eric Gill did in his 1930s book, An Essay on Typography. The pilcrow was used in the Middle Ages to mark a new train of thought, before the convention of physically discrete paragraphs was commonplace.

The pilcrow is usually drawn similar to a lowercase q reaching from descender to ascender height; the loop can be filled or unfilled. It may also be drawn with the bowl stretching further downwards, resembling a backwards D; this is more often seen in older printing.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

paraph

paraph

A flourish made after or below signature, originally to prevent forgery.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Prolix

Prolix
  1. Tediously lengthy.
    • 1843, "Bossi—Necrologia G. C. Leonardo Sismondi.", vol. LXXII, issue CXLIV, p. 333,
      People who have blamed [Jean Charles Léonard de] Sismondi as unnecessarily prolix cannot have considered the crowd of details presented by the history of Italy.
  2. Tending to use large or obscure words, which few understand.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Herpetology


Herpetology is the branch of zoology concerned with the study of amphibians (including frogs, toads, salamanders, newts, and gymnophionae) and reptiles (including snakes, lizards, amphisbaenids, turtles, terrapins, tortoises, crocodilians, and the tuataras). Batrachology is a further subdiscipline of herpetology concerned with the study of amphibians alone.

Monday, March 19, 2012

testudinal

testudinal


resembling a tortoise or the shell of a tortoise

Sunday, March 18, 2012

bolide

The word bolide comes from the Greek βολίς (bolis) which can mean a missile or to flash. The IAU has no official definition of "bolide", and generally considers the term synonymous with "fireball". The bolide term is generally used for fireballs reaching magnitude -14 or brighter. Astronomers tend to use the term to mean an exceptionally bright fireball, particularly one that explodes (sometimes called a detonating fireball).

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Synapsids


Synapsids ('fused arch') are a group of animals that includes mammals and everything more closely related to mammals than to other living amniotes. They are easily separated from other amniotes by having an opening low in the skull roof behind each eye, leaving a bony arch beneath each, accounting for their name. Primitive synapsids are usually called pelycosaurs; more advanced mammal-like ones, therapsids. The non-mammalian members are described as mammal-like reptiles in classical systematics, but are referred to as "stem-mammals" or "proto-mammals" under cladistic terminology. Synapsids evolved from basal amniotes and are one of the two major groups of the later amniotes, the other major group being the sauropsids (reptiles and birds). They are distinguished from other amniotes by having a single opening (temporal fenestra) in their skull behind each eye, which developed in the ancestral synapsid about 324 million years ago (mya) during the late Carboniferous Period.

Synapsids were the dominant terrestrial animals in the middle to late Permian period. As with almost all groups then extant, their numbers and variety were severely reduced by the Permian extinction. Some species survived into the Triassic period, but archosaurs quickly became the dominant animals and few of the non-mammalian synapsids outlasted the Triassic, although survivors persisted into the Cretaceous. However, as a phylogenetic unit they included the mammal descendants, and in this sense synapsids are still very much a living group of vertebrates. In the form of mammals, Synapsids (most recently and notably humans) again became the dominant land animals after they outcompeted birds following the K-T extinction event.

Friday, March 16, 2012

numnah

A saddle blanket is a blanket which is inserted under a saddle in order to absorb sweat, cushion the saddle, and protect the horse's back. A saddle pad or numnah is thicker, usually with layers of felt, foam or other modern material sandwiched between a tough outer cover on top and a soft cover on the side in contact with the horse. The best designs absorb shock and minimize fatigue for the horse's back muscles. Saddle pads of various styles or shapes are used with any type of saddle. Sheepskin numnahs that are shaped to fit around a show or dressage saddle are popular in Australian show rings.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

homily

A homily is a commentary that follows a reading of scripture. In Catholic, Anglican, Lutheran, and Eastern Orthodox Churches, a homily is usually given during Mass (Divine Liturgy for Orthodox and Eastern Catholic Churches, and Divine Service for the Lutheran Church) at the end of the Liturgy of the Word. Many people consider it synonymous with a sermon.

Contemporary clergy often use the term 'homily' to describe a short sermon, such as one created for a wedding or funeral. In colloquial usage, homily often means a sermon concerning a practical matter, a moralizing lecture or admonition, or an inspirational saying or platitude.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Kowtow


Kowtow is the act of deep respect shown by kneeling and bowing so low as to have one's head touching the ground. An alternative Chinese term is ketou however, the meaning is somewhat altered: kòu originally meant "knock with reverence", whereas kē has the general meaning of "touch upon (a surface)".

In Han Chinese culture, the kowtow is the highest sign of reverence. It was widely used to show reverence for one's elders, superiors, and especially the Emperor, as well as for religious and cultural objects of worship. In modern times, usage of the kowtow has become much reduced.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Lexiphanic

Lexiphanic: Using bombastic or pretentious wording or language.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Jackanapes

Jackanapes:

1450, from “Jack of Naples”, with “of Naples” rendered “a Napes” in vernacular. Originally rendered as Jac Napes, Jac Nape, and Jack Napis in 1450s. Presumably from *Jak a Napes, and original *Jak of Naples, presumably circa 1400. Monkeys were one of many exotic goods from Naples exhibited in Britain, hence acquired the nickname Jack a Napes.

In sense “upstart person”, applied to 15th century William de la Pole, 1st Duke of Suffolk, one of first nouveau riche nobles (risen from merchant class). The family used a collar and chain on their coat of arms, which was an unfortunate choice, as this was more associated with monkey leashes, leading to the derisive nickname Jack Napis for de la Pole, yielding the insult.

Later mis-analyzed as Jack-an-apes (16th and 17th century), leading to folk etymology (taking “ape” from “monkey”). The same process and mis-analysis occurred for fustian of Naples, which became fustian a napes, fustian anapes, etc.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Apodization

Apodization literally means "removing the foot". It is the technical term for changing the shape of a mathematical function, an electrical signal, an optical transmission or a mechanical structure. An example of apodization is the use of the Hann window in the Fast Fourier transform analyzer to smooth the discontinuities at the beginning and end of the sampled time record.

Friday, March 9, 2012

APODYOPSIS

APODYOPSIS
the practice of envisioning a person in the buff, or naked.
I just couldn't help indulging in a little apodyopsis after meeting the new office secretary; she had more curves than a warped two-by-four.
by weave Sep 20, 2003 share this

Thursday, March 8, 2012

infix


An infix is an affix inserted inside a stem (an existing word). It contrasts with adfix, a rare term for an affix attached to the end of a stem, such as a prefix or suffix.
  • The infix ‹iz› or ‹izn› is characteristic of hip-hop slang, for example hizouse for house and shiznit for shit. Infixes also occur in some language games.
  • "Fucking" is sometimes used as an expletive infix, as in "un-fucking-believable". This can also be considered an instance of tmesis rather than an infix.
  • The ‹ma› infix, whose location in the word is described in Yu (2004), gives a word an ironic pseudo-sophistication, as in sophistimacated, saxomaphone, and edumacation. This exists as a slang phenomenon popularised by Homer Simpson's use.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Waveform

Waveform means the shape and form of a signal such as a wave moving in a physical medium or an abstract representation.

In many cases the medium in which the wave is being propagated does not permit a direct visual image of the form. In these cases, the term 'waveform' refers to the shape of a graph of the varying quantity against time or distance. An instrument called an oscilloscope can be used to pictorially represent a wave as a repeating image on a screen. By extension, the term 'waveform' also describes the shape of the graph of any varying quantity against time.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Reductionism

Reductionism can either mean (a) an approach to understanding the nature of complex things by reducing them to the interactions of their parts, or to simpler or more fundamental things or (b) a philosophical position that a complex system is nothing but the sum of its parts, and that an account of it can be reduced to accounts of individual constituents. This can be said of objects, phenomena, explanations, theories, and meanings.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Utilitarianism

Utilitarianism (also: utilism) is the idea that the moral worth of an action is determined solely by its usefulness in maximizing utility and minimizing negative utility (utility can be defined as pleasure, preference satisfaction, knowledge or other things) as summed among all sentient beings. It is thus a form of consequentialism, meaning that the moral worth of an action is determined by its outcome. The most influential contributors to this theory are considered to be Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

detritus

In biology, detritus is non-living particulate organic material (as opposed to dissolved organic material). It typically includes the bodies or fragments of dead organisms as well as fecal material. Detritus is typically colonized by communities of microorganisms which act to decompose (or remineralize) the material. In terrestrial ecosystems, it is encountered as leaf litter and other organic matter intermixed with soil, which is referred to as humus. Detritus of aquatic ecosystems is organic material suspended in water, which is referred to as marine snow.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Helheim


In Norse mythology, Helheim, the location, means "house of Hel." It was the abode of Hel, a female figure who ruled the Underworld in Norse Mythology. In late Icelandic sources, varying descriptions of Hel are given and various figures are described as being buried with items that will facilitate their journey to Hel after their death. In the Poetic Edda, Brynhildr's trip to Hel after her death is described and Odin, while alive, also visits Hel upon his horse Sleipnir. In the Prose Edda, Baldr goes to Hel upon death and subsequently Hermóðr uses Sleipnir to attempt to retrieve him. "Hel-shoes" are described in Gísla saga.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Rigdonite

Rigdonite is a name given to members of the Latter Day Saint movement who accept Sidney Rigdon as the successor in the church presidency to movement founder, Joseph Smith, Jr.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

clowder


clowder (plural clowders)

  1. A group of cats.