GLOSSARY of TECHNOBABBLE
A note for the reader:
You can't tell the players without a scorecard.
In modern times it is often true that our terminology, the
handmaiden of technology, races ahead of our ability to keep track of it.
As a result, there are times when you will likely stumble
across a word in this book whose meaning you will understand when you first
come across it, but which later you will have forgotten. Sort of like stubbing
your toe in the dark against the bedpost.
Anyway, here's a technobabble glossary to help you out.
avatar -- a virtual reality representation, in real
time, of another person on the internet.
banned -- an internetworking address
removed from the registry of vCity city coordinates. The content on the server
remains wherever it is, but the link from the vCity simulation is removed. To
go to that site, a viewer (user) would need to exit the vCity and use a normal
Internet VRML-based brower.
beam -- to go to a city coordinate
directly, without using any of the transportation systems postulated in the
bookmarking -- a PC-based mode of
beaming (see above).
casbar -- slang for an internetworking
traffic problem. A chaotic situation caused by too many people trying to access
one spot within the vCity simulation and aggravated by the tendency to try to
access the spot by different routes.
CC: City Coordinate. The exact center of the vCity is
(0,0,0). Each CC represents a 1 meter cubed volume, and may correspond to no
more than one internet address. Moving into a specific CC means attempting
access to an internet address.
diablito -- literally, "little devil".
Slang for a software program -- sometimes also referred to as "knowbot" -- that
uses artificial intelligence to screen and prioritize data or higher-order
download -- to transfer a file or
stream of bits and/or bytes from one server to another. The same word is
sometimes used as a noun in reference to the entirety of the bitstream or file
ecosimm -- a software program running within the
larger vCity simulation, designed to simulate an ecological niche or zone.
GD: Goodwill Division. A bulletin board community of
vCitizens interested in aesthetic development of the vCity simulation.
HMD: Head-Mounted Display. A term used to describe
any electronic hardware such as helmets, visors, goggles, etc. attached to the
Lightspeed -- a virtual reality sport combining
aspects of in-line rollerblading and Ultimate disc.
mapp -- slang for marketing application. A software
program tailored to the immediate needs of the user.
Meg -- One million bytes of data (Eight million
Megaburp -- A transmission rate: one million bytes
per second (Eight million bits per second).
Mole rats -- slang for vCitizens of the Mole sector
of Belowtown, ages 8-16. Vigilantes famous for their ability to track down
telecriminals and render telejustice.
MSE: Multiple Sensory Environment. A general term
used to describe any electronic hardware augmenting any of the senses (touch,
taste, sight, hearing, smell) or acting upon the human body with varying
degrees of pressure, heat, or voltage.
New Millennite: slang for someone who was born on or
after 1983; more generally, anyone with a cultural affinity for the newest or
latest fad, gizmo, or pseudo-science.
nolo -- No Local Operator. Slang for
remote-controlled human presence via telecommunications devices.
nowlink -- files located at an internet
address on a server; 2D or 3D content available for downloading or on-line
perusal, often containing hypertext links to other internet addresses or vCity
city coordinates. A modern version of the newspaper.
onion -- slang for a dense part of the
vCity. A zoning volume whose many city coordinates have been filled.
PC-based mode: viewing the virtual reality
environment on a television or computer screen or other flat display. As
opposed to viewing via HMD.
rathole -- slang for a virtual reality
mass transit underground station.
scapp -- Self Contained Application. Software
programs or routines that run interdependently with and within a larger
program, creating a VR illusion of independent movement in real-time. Different
from an avatar, which represents a real person somewhere on the Internet.
sidelink -- an oblique way to try to access a city
coordinate by first contacting an intermediate coordinate. It doesn't help, but
people try them anyway.
simm -- slang for simulation, both the noun and the
verb. As the former, it refers to a software program. As a verb, it means to
interactively participate on-line in a virtual reality setting.
simmcorp -- a simulated corporation, either a "front"
for a real world corporation, or more simply an idea for any business
enterprise expressed in terms of the vCity zoning regulations.
sink -- a negative tower. The residential or
commercial space occupied below the virtual horizon.
skinny pipe -- slang for an internetworking
connection that can transmit and receive data at a relatively slow rate.
sponge -- slang for a large zoning
volume that does not contain many active CCs; that is to say, links to specific
steamrolled -- slang for a sudden,
disconcerting transition from three dimensional virtual reality to two
dimensional virtual reality. The ill-effect is most noticeable when the viewer
is wearing HMD and/or MSE equipment.
techsimm -- a software program running within the
larger vCity simulation, designed to simulate a technology or technological
system such as transportation, power, water, sewage, etcetera.
vBrahman -- slang for one of the original
participants in the vCity; specifically, anyone whose residence in the vCity
was registered in 1997 or 1998.
vKiosk -- an architectural concept; a small zoning
volume designated specifically for selling or otherwise making available
nowlinks, downloads, mapps, and any other electronic goods or services.
zigguraut -- slang for an immense building technology
that works as a vertical community unto itself, zoned for both residential and
ZV: Zoning Volume. A ZV is a set, of two or more city
coordinates, of which at least one member corresponds to at least one internet
address. Some ZVs can "contain" hundreds of thousands of CCs even if most of
them are inactive.
back to index