Monthly Archives: January 2011

Fusty — are you?


Sometimes I see or hear words that are interesting.  I jot them down or put them in a Word document for later.  Then sometimes, like with the word fusty, I forget where I found them.

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Freedom is just another word

Word of the year posts are popular this time of your. 

How about word FOR the year?

My new friend BJ Smith recently posted an interesting article on his BJS Communications blog.  Attending a recent meeting had  him thinking about his word for the year.

Here is the post from BJS Communications:

Freedom is just another word

In a Northern Colorado Writers meeting the other day, Director Kerrie Flanagan asked those in attendance to share what would be their special “word for the year.”

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Gallimaufry of activity

Gallimaufry is not a word that I know.  Well, I do now.  One of our relatives used it to in their recent Christmas family newsletter.  The context was that she was describing the year she and her family had experienced.

Gallimaufry means a hodgepodge.  It can also mean a jumble or confessed medley.

The origin is from the Middle French word galimafree meaning stew. It can also be traced to the word galer, that means to make merry, and malfrer meaning to gorge oneself.

Time and time again, words keep appearing in my life from sources that surprise me.

Captcha — gotcha

CAPTCHA—I bet you use it and don’t know it.  A captcha is that box with the squiggle words you need to enter to have access to a site. It helps decide if the person wanting to access the site is a human or a computer bot (spam bot).

One wonders if at what point a programmer will figure out how to have a computer read these words and bypass this safeguard.

If you notice the word or two a captcha site asks you enter, the words are wavy and may have a line thought them.

CAPTCHA is actually an acronym for Comply Automated Pubic Turing test to Tell Humans and Computers Apart.  In 2000, Luis von Ahn, Manuel Blum, Nicholas Hopper and John Langford of Carnegie Mellon University coined the term.

ALSO:  I received and email from Elan at a company called  Adscaptcha after I wrote this post.   He seems to have a company that created unique captcha tool. It combines ads as the captchas. Security and advertising combined–that could be in interesting twist for some.

Screed — read

Screed is not a word I have seen before.  I first saw it on the title of a book on display at the Northern Colorado Writers’ Studio.

 Curious minds had to know.

After some investigation—okay, Google searches—here is what I found. Screed can be an informal letter or other piece of writing.  Some feel it means a long, monotonous speech or piece of writing. Others go as far as to say it is a diatribe or a ranting.


I hope no one describes most of my writing as screed.   Well, at least I have a new word for my next scrabble game.