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Computing jargon de-mystified

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Are you stumped by struct? Flummoxed by foobar? Confounded by clustering?

Then you'll be as delighted as we were to discover FOLDOC, the Free On-Line Dictionary Of Computing.

The FOLDOC website states:

The dictionary started in 1985 and has grown, with the help of 2000 contributors (as of 2007-07-25), to contain over 14000 definitions in over five megabytes of text. It is freely available on the Internet. It currently handles around 10000 WWW queries per day.

FOLDOC is edited and maintained by Imperial College computer scientist Denis Howe. It isn't clear if it is being maintained and updated with the latest terms; certainly, some of the more recent bits of jargon to enter the lexicon of computing experts seem to be absent. But the site states that contributions are welcome, and the site automatically logs the search terms for which there were no answers, providing them as a sort of to-do list to inspire contributors.

Even if more recent terms never make it in, the dictionary is huge, and has already proved useful to our editors.

You can check it out yourself at

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