Angry Fruit Salad Mystery Solved As Internet Dictionary is Launched

October 5, 2001

If you’re left confused by Internet talk of an angry fruit salad, the infobahn and emoticons then help is available from a new book by Professor Darrel Ince of the Open University.

And if you’re none the wiser when it comes to understanding FWIW, MUSM or ROFL in e-mail messaging, the newly-published Dictionary of the Internet could offer those much-needed explanations.

Professor Ince, Professor of Computing at the university, defines more than 4,000 terms from the Web in this book. Basic Internet terms sit alongside jargon from the areas of software technology, e-commerce, security and websites.

For readers who prefer their information on-screen, a free CD-Rom, which is included with the book, contains all the dictionary entries in a browsable format. Links between entries and to relevant websites are also included.

To ensure his dictionary work is kept as up-to-date as possible, Professor Ince is establishing a separate website, where downloadable additional entries will also be posted, alongside sample entries from the text. The dictionary is among the first to concentrate in depth on the terminology and infrastructure of the Internet, rather than on general computing terms.

Professor Ince says: “The dictionary has its roots in a question I was once asked during a consultation visit to an oil company. In trying to find out the answer to a question about an Internet term from a senior member of the technical staff I discovered that, while there were a number of good dictionaries, there were only a few that were solely devoted to Internet technology. Those that I consulted contained around a few hundred Internet terms with quite a lot of padding provided by general computing terms. Dictionary of the Internet is my attempt to remedy that situation.”

The dictionary includes terms from all sectors of the Web, including digerati – for those who have contributed to the growth and awareness of the Internet – and security terms such as identity theft and Internet piracy.

Dictionary of the Internet (ISBN 0-19-280124-4) is published by Oxford University Press and is priced at £16.99 (paperback), to include the CD-Rom version.

Darrel Ince is the author of 28 books, including Programming the Internet with Java, Software Engineering and student textbooks. Another title of his – Developing Distributed and E-commerce Applications, which assesses the development of e-commerce and e-business systems through the use of new technologies – was also recently published (Addison Wesley; ISBN 0-201-73046-4).

For information about review copies of Dictionary of the Internet, please contact Neil Coaten on the contact number below.


Neil Coaten

Open University Media Relations

01908 652580

Prof Darrel Ince

Professor of Computing, Open University

01908 652692