Technology Acronyms Explored

Arbitrary acronym categories for common technobabble

Technology acronyms demystified!

Posted 11th March 2022

Acronyms are great… when used wisely. They can be easier on the brain, some are actual mnemonics - hinting at their expansion’s meaning (see DRY, KISS as examples). That said, these advantages may be nullified by the sheer volume of acronyms one must recall in common technical parlance. If any expansions escape you, you are not alone.

Enter the 2022 Turboencabulator

The turboencabulator is a pretend machine developed in 1944, conceived to mock technobabble. Several decades later any programming paradigm argument will eventually see OOP, DRY, and SOLID in the same sentence to bamboozle opponents in very much the same spirit. Add SCRUM for good measure.

Lists of expansions abound online, but most acronyms fall in one or more of the following broad categories:

'Visual acronym?'

1. Specific technical concepts or technologies

ex. FQN: Fully Qualified Name

  • The name of an object including all its parents’ names. Can be used to identify the target uniquely
  • Fully Qualified File Name identifies a file in a File System, including the full path from root. It is a subset of a Fully Qualified Path Name, which may specify a directory as well.

2. Paradigms or Methodologies

ex. TDD: Test Driven Development

  • A development paradigm, using a test suite and iterative failing tests to guide the writing of minimal code and ensuring compliance after changes
  • Slows development, facilitating robust code. Easy to misunderstand, often inapplicable

    Domain Driven Design is “Driven” more vaguely, stating that system design should stem from the real-world system concerned. Doing an accounting tool? Learn accounting

3. Mnemonics for good practices

ex. DRY: Don’t Repeat Yourself

  • “Dry” code is a mnemonic itself
  • Requires identifying opportunities for modules and generalizations

    Deceptively easy to state, not to do, like Keep It Simple, Stupid (define “Simple”… )

4. References the “culture” in its expansion

ex. POCO: Plain Old Class Object

  • Defines an object (in Object Oriented Programming) which has no “depth” (state/logic), convenient to hold data
  • Often used for models of databases, easy to generate via tooling

    Like Yet Another Markup Language, references the “culture” in its expansion

5. Nested Acronyms

ex. AJAX: Asynchronous JavaScript And XML

  • A nested acronym containing eXtensible Markup Language
  • Surprisingly (to many) not a technology, but rather a methodology
  • Also an enthusiastic way of supporting a Dutch football (soccer) team

6. Retconned to Acronym

ex. FUBAR: Fudged Up Beyond All Repair

  • Slang made by mangling a German word, retconned as acronym
  • Military in origin, yet describes 95% of automated merges
  • Fudged does not make it kid friendly

7. Unfriendly to Humanity


‘Single responsibility’: 
  ‘each class should be responsible for one thing’,

  ‘Entities are open to expansion, closed to modification’,

‘Liskov substitution’: 
  ‘Using a derived class should be identical to the base class’,

‘Interface segregation’: 
  ‘Make interfaces containing only methods you use’,

‘Dependency inversion’: 
  ‘Depend on high level abstractions, not implementations’
  • “Fake” acronym, expanding to five definitions
  • Can apply to any OOP design
  • Yes, that is a mock JS object

Godspeed and HF!

(HF: Have Fun. Gamers say it, those pesky mouse-clickers)

Contact us today!