Category Archives: Words can be funny

Everyday humor in words. Observations and musings about words.

Bokeh — what is it?

bokeh_definitionBokeh is the word I am thinking of today.

 

I came across this word as I was  reading a book on digital photography.  It can be pronounced boh-kay or boh-kuh.  In addition to being an interesting word, it would score well in the game of Scrabble.

Definition of bokeh—The aesthetic quality of the blur produced in the out-of-focus parts of an image produced by a lens.  It can also mean “the way the lens renders out-of-focus points of light.”

A photo having a smooth, silky-looking out-of-focus area behind the main subject is said to have a nice bokeh.

The word bokeh is from the Japanese language.  It’s a translation of “mental haze.”

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Technology fading away

Blogfade

Technology really isn’t fading way but some applications maybe be subject to fading.

blogfade-definition

I recently came across the word blogfade or blog fade, if you prefer.

Blogfade occurs when a person sets up a blog and starts posting to it, only to abandon or forget about it later.  Neglecting a blog can be causes by many factors including losing your initial enthusiasm, realizing it is a lot of work, etc.  Sometimes blogs fade because the person responsible for it on an organization leaves.

Closely related to blogfade is podcast fade.  The concept is the same. Someone starts a podcasts, putting up new episodes on a regular and consistent basis.  Again, for whatever reason, they stop doing this.

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Reading everything –even a shampoo bottle

shampoo blogShampoo bottle reading? Really?

Yes, I am a reader.  I read almost every of the free newspapers found at coffee shops among other things.  Growing up, I read the cereal box as I ate my morning cereal.

So, it doesn’t strike me as strange that I recently read–in detail–some of the text on the shampoo bottle that my wife placed in the shower.

I guess I should be happy that my bottle of soapy water does so much.

First is says it has the collagen plumping effect.  My hair may like this but I am not too keen on anything that will make me look plump.

Next, the bottles says it is a weightless shampoo.  What? It sure seems to have some weight, or maybe that’s just the plastic bottle.  Seems to me that astronauts might benefit from this characteristic more than me.

Next, the label states that my shampoo is silicon free.  (No dash)  I had not idea why  this is a positive attribute, so like any good computer used, I Googled it.  Seems that silicon on the hair lessens the effect of hair dye.  The silicone coats the hairs, making it harder for the coloring to adhere.   This is not a concern to me–my hair has been gray for quite some time now.

I scratched my soapy head when I saw that the shampoo I use keeps my hair thick and full-bodied for 24 hours.  If I had  more time on my hands, I might time it to see what I look like in that 25th hour.

Actually, the 24-hour effect comes with an asterisk.  To attain this lofty goal, my bottle says I have to use other products–presumably from the same manufacturer— to condition and spray my hair.  I’ll take my changes, thank  you very much.

On the back of the bottle, I am assured that by using this product, I will have what the company calls, “healthier hair with every wash.”

Boy, do I feel better.

Cinquain word definition

cinquain_definitionCinquain — What is it?

In a recent discussion about poetry, this word came up  — cinquain.    I don’t know if I have ever heard it before, so I wrote it down.

In addition to being new, my mind thought, “Hmm, this would be a great Scrabble word.”

In the world of poetry, cinquain means:

a short poem consisting of five, usually unrhymed lines. These lines are two, four, six, eight and two syllables respectively.

In general, cinquain means a group of five.

Origin:  French, from cinq five, from Old French, from Latin quinque — more at five

First known use: 1882
Now you know the meaning of a new word. Had I been more clever and timely, I would have posted this on May 5 — Cinco De Mayo.

Hyperlapse — have you seen it?

hyperlapse_definitionHyperlapse video

You may not know the term but I bet you have seen this type of video.  It also goes by the names  walklapse, spacelapse, stop-motion time-lapse, motion timelapse and  moving timelapse.

This type of video is an exposure technique in time-lapse photography.   What is unique about hyperlapse videos is that the position of the camera is being changed between each exposure.

American filmmaker Dan Eckert coined the term hyperlapse.

Before a label was created, the technique itself can be traced back Guy Roland. He invented the technique in 1986, experimenting with a Super8 mm film camera. Roland compressed imagery by lining up objects and filming them one frame at a time. He gradually changed his vantage point between each photo.

Here is what digitalspy.com has to say on the topic:

Time lapse photography is something that has been around for a long time. Traditionally however it requires you to have a tripod and the ability to stand still for hours on end.

Now, however, things have changed thanks to Instagram and its clever Hyperlapse app. The application lets you capture time lapse videos while you walk about, using a clever algorithm that will stitch all the images together and remove as much judder as possible.

Unlike Instagram, which is a social network, Hyperlapse is more of a photographic tool. Videos can of course be shared to Instagram, but hyperlapse exists as a separate application altogether.

I was surprised that hypelapse is not a video. It is a quick series of photos.

Check out Youtube for examples of hyperlapse and how to do it.

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What is a quick serve restaurant?

quick_serve_restaurantQuick serve restaurant

This term has cropped up on some of the reality restaurant shows I have been watching.

The quick serve restaurant is known for fast, efficient, take-out-ready foods at affordable prices. Some people use the term in place of the older term of fast food. Quick-service restaurants are often chains.

To confuse the issue, there is also a category of restaurant called fast, casual dining.  Here are some distinctions of the fast casual eating experience.

  • The prices are little higher. (from $7-$15 for a meal, depending on the location)
  • The food is perceived to be higher quality–steak may be on the menu.
  • The food is sometimes perceived to be healthier—and may include organic food.
  • The food is sometimes made fresh, sometimes right in front of you.
  • The ambiance and decor are nicer.
  • Some even use  non-plastic utensils and plates.
  • Alcohol may be served.
  • You still purchase your food at the counter and then seat yourself.

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Jail vs. prison

jail_vs_prison

Jail vs. prison

I read a blogs about words, follow Facebook groups that deal with words and I listen to word-related podcasts.

This topic came up recently a about two words that are similar.  The words are jail and prison.  In the U.S., it is fairly common that a jail is used for lesser offenses and less serious crimes.  Prisons are for felons and those who will be incarcerated for many years, if not for life.

Anyway, someone online pointed out that by adding an “er” to each of the words, jail and prison, the results are quite different.

A jailer is someone who watches over those who are locked up.   A prisoner is some who is locked up.

Do you know of any other words that change completely when you add a prefix or suffix?
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