WARNING!!!! If you take photos with your cell phone

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Read Time:53 Second
“Warning” If you, your kids or grand kids take pics from your phone—WATCH THIS!
 
This is truly alarming – please take the time to watch. At the end they’ll tell you how to set your phone so you don’t run this risk!
 
PLEASE PASS THIS INFO TO ANYONE YOU KNOW WHO TAKES PICTURES WITH THEIR CELL OR SMART PHONE AND POSTS THEM ONLINE.
 
I want everyone of you to watch this and then be sure to share with all your family and friends.
 
It’s REALLY important info, about what your posting things on your cell phones can do TO YOU!!!
 
Too much technology out there these days so beware………..
 
PLEASE TAKE THE TIME TO WATCH THIS VIDEO, AND TAKE THE RECOMMENDED PRECAUTIONS.
 
If you have children or grandchildren you NEED to watch this. I had no idea this could happen from taking pictures on the blackberry or cell phone. It’s scary.
 
{youtube}N2vARzvWxwY{/youtube}

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Anthony Claret

Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.
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NIGERIA: ASUU Wants NUC to Account for N100b Annual University Stabilization Fund

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Read Time:2 Minute, 5 Second
The Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, Monday, urged the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, to prevail on the executive secretary of the National Universities Commission, NUC, to account for the N100 billion annual stabilization fund provided by the Federal Government to the Commission for improvement of facilities in the nation’s government-owned universities.
 
Chairman of the Nsukka Zone of ASUU, Dr. Chidi Osuagwu, at a media briefing on the on-going strike action embarked upon by university lecturers in the country at the Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, accused the NUC boss of being a cog in the wheel of university education and development in Nigeria, adding that the strike would not have become necessary if the annual stabilization fund was properly managed.
 
He said: “We have not seen anything done with the stabilization fund. If the NUC has been spending the money as expected, there would not have been this strike in the first place as the issues demanded by ASUU would have been taken care of.
 
“The EFCC and other responsible agencies of government should investigate this matter in the interest of the growth of education in the country. ASUU embarked on the current strike as a result of the failure of the federal government to implement the agreement it willingly entered into with ASUU in October, 2009.
 
“Between 2009 and 2011, ASUU had made serious efforts in getting the government to implement the agreement by even embarking on warning strikes, but government on its side paid deaf ears to these efforts.
 
“It is important to inform the public that the current strike by ASUU is not meant to make any fresh demands on government, but simply and squarely to ask government to rise to the challenges of responsible governance by fulfilling the provisions of an agreement which it freely signed four years ago.”
 
According to him, ASUU feels embarrassed by the rumours making the rounds that the on-going strike would be called off tomorrow, Thursday, insisting that the strike would continue unless the 2009 ASUU-FGN agreement is fully implemented.
 
Osuagwu argued that Nigeria has adequate resources to properly fund education in the country, describing as regrettable a situation whereby the country spends 25 percent of its budget on members of the national assembly, but cannot meet the 26 percent requirement for the funding of education as prescribed by the United Nations Educational and Scientific Organization, UNESCO.

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Anthony Claret

Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.
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Early high school graduation programs gain traction

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Read Time:3 Minute, 29 Second
Lindsay Kast had a different experience in high school than most of her peers.
 
The Tell City, Ind., native missed out on senior prom and never took study hall periods, becoming the first student in her alma mater's history to graduate in three years. The 19-year-old's accelerated diploma allowed her to enroll in August 2012 at Indiana University in Bloomington and qualified her for a $4,000 scholarship.
 
"I always felt part of older classes" in high school, Kast said. "And I had a really great experience my freshman year at IU."
 
Financial incentives also are offered in Idaho, Minnesota, South Dakota and Utah to students who complete high school in fewer than four years, lowering districts' instructional costs. Although exact figures remain elusive, the creation of these programs suggests their popularity may be growing among students, said Jennifer Dounay Zinth, a senior policy analyst at the Education Commission of the States.
 
In Indiana, the number of scholarships awarded to students who graduated high school early rose from 17 in 2011-12 to 204 in 2012-13, a 1,100% increase, according to Amanda Stanley, director of program relationships for the Indiana Commission for Higher Education.
 
But that pathway may not be wise for all students, education experts say.
 
"There are probably kids who are mature enough to begin college when they're 17 years old and there are probably kids who are not," Zinth said.
 
Across the nation, fewer than 3% of students graduate high school early, according to the National Center for Education Statistics' most recent report from 2004. About half of states have policies that allow the practice, according to the Education Commission of the States.
 
Now early high school graduation programs are getting a boost at the local level.
 
Dallas Independent School District, the second largest in Texas, is creating a three-year high school proposal that would direct savings to finance pre-kindergarten programs. If approved, the option likely would take effect for the 2014-15 school year.
 
A desire to better tailor the educational system to students' needs is the motivation, proponents say.
 
If students are enrolled in a structured vocational program or rigorous course work such as Advanced Placement classes, then four years of high school remains worthwhile, said Mike Morath, a Dallas school board trustee. If they are not, senior year has fewer benefits.
 
"The thrust of high school is to try to help prepare kids for their next steps," Morath said. "How can we make that more effective?"
 
Texas school districts now receive money on a per-pupil basis. A bill passed in the state's most recent legislative session will enable the Dallas district to obtain state dollars for students who graduate under the three-year proposal.
 
Advocates of the programs across the USA say they help reduce state spending and can give students a jump-start on college and their careers.
 
Oftentimes, the programs target low-income students, who face the highest barriers to access and success in college, said Michelle Camacho Liu, a former policy specialist at the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
It also can help eliminate senioritis, when "a lot of people see senior year as completely wasted," Zinth said.
 
But the drawbacks to accelerating high school may reveal themselves when a student enters college.
 
Ally Neal, who graduated at age 17 from Westwood High School in Mesa, Ariz., said it was difficult to connect with her Grand Canyon University classmates in Phoenix.
 
"When I was starting, I felt so grown-up, but now I don't really know anyone," she said.
 
Neal, now 20 and planning to attend law school next year, said her age will become less of an issue in the future — but she still will feel young when she completes college.
 
"It feels really weird," she said. "I'll graduate before I turn 21."

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Anthony Claret

Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.
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Americanah: A tale of three continents

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Read Time:1 Minute, 45 Second

With two highly successful novels under her belt, it is perhaps unsurprising that with her third novel, Americanah, Chimamanda Adichie has scored a hattrick. Adichie is adept at speaking to her readers through authentically created characters, weaving a tale that captivates, from the first chapter till the very last sentence.

Literature enthusiasts, and especially Adichie fans, are welcome to a Rainbow Book Club discussion of Americanah this Friday, July 26, 2013 at 11.30 a.m. at Le Meridien, Ogeyi Place.

Adichie beautifully captures current trends in the average African country where migration to distant shores seems to be everyone’s dream. The story begins when two high school teenagers fall in love and, although focused on their present relationship, dream of educational and professional success while dealing with the frustrations of unstable educational systems and unpredictable economic conditions.

Ifemelu, the story’s main female character, is an unlikely candidate for a life in the West, having come from a poor background. As fate would have it, she makes the first venture to the United States, leaving her lover Obinze behind.

On arrival at America, a country previously hyped up by her classmates, Ifemelu is shocked to discover how bland and somewhat dismal life there is, especially because she initially lives with her aunt in a poor neighborhood in New York. Her every experience of America is relayed onto Obinze who, on the other side of the world, is always eager to hear about a country he idolizes from a girl he adores.

In time, Obinze makes his way to the United Kingdom, by which time his relationship with Ifemelu is fractured. Living in two continents, both of them arrive at new understandings of racism, loneliness and rejection in their quest for better fortunes.

In Americanah, Adichie presents such heavy topics as race with simplicity, allowing for a greater understanding of identity. Readers are given insight as to how social issues like race are manifested in both Western countries.  The public is invited to a discussion on Friday on the various themes present in this intriguing work.

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Anthony Claret

Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.
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Professor finds corpse-eating tropical fly in Indiana

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Read Time:4 Minute, 2 Second
INDIANAPOLIS — Last September, a professor from Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis opened a container of rotten chicken meat on campus and waited for the smell of decaying flesh to draw the flies to her.
 
Did they ever. Among the flies that landed in professor Christine Picard's net was a species that no other forensic entomologist had found this far north.
 
Not only does the discovery of the blowfly have implications for the way forensic entomologists do their work, it attests to the subtle effects that erratic weather may be having on even the smallest of species.
 
"That was a significant find," said Neal Haskell, a professor of forensic science at St. Joseph's College of Indiana, a national expert in forensic entomology.
 
Forensic entomologists such as Picard and Haskell help criminal investigations by studying the insects found on bodies. The number present — and their developmental state — can provide information on how long a person has been dead.
 
Therefore, knowing the local species and their life cycles is critical.
 
The fly is known for its large head, as its Latin name — Chrysomya megacephala Fabricius — implies. It is now in the Purdue University Entomological Collections, the lone specimen of its kind. Picard published her find in the July issue of the "Proceedings of the Entomological Society of Washington."
 
Before Picard's find Sept. 24, the Chrysomya megacephala Fabricius had never been seen farther north than New Mexico. Native to Asia and Africa, the fly was first seen in the southern states of the continental U.S in 1988.
 
But last summer's hotter-than normal temperatures probably led it to feel comfortable enough to fly north, experts say.
 
In Rensselaer, Haskell told his students to look for the fly during their weekly collecting trips. But nothing turned up.
 
"I kind of expected it last year," he said. "It doesn't mean it wasn't here. We just didn't find it. There are not too many people actually looking at blowflies."
 
Count Picard among the few who are. She studies flies such as this one that breed in and feed on decomposing animal flesh.
 
"Because these flies will only come to a body after it has passed and they will consume all of the tissue, you can basically work backward," said Picard, an assistant professor of biology in the School of Science at IUPUI.
 
As a body decomposes, it emits odors that attract these insects. Females lay their eggs in an opening of the body, such as the eyes, nose, mouth or if one exists a gunshot or knife wound. Depending on the species and temperature, the eggs hatch in 24 hours or more.
 
They hatch as small maggots that go through two additional phases over the next few days. Then they hatch into a third phase in which they are larger and grow more rapidly. Often it's when the flies reach this stage of the life cycle that the body is discovered. At this point, "the body really smells," Picard said.
 
Throughout these larval stages, the maggots feed on the tissue. When they have reached a certain point in growth, they will leave the body, burrow into some nearby soil or leaves, pupate for a week to a few weeks and emerge as adult flies.
 
Forensic entomologists look for the oldest insect on the body for an idea of how long it has been dead, Picard said. Often a forensic entomologist may testify at a trial as to how long a body was in a location to support or debunk an alibi.
 
Because development stages and times differ between species, forensic entomologists need to know not only how to identify flies but also know that individual's life trajectory.
 
Indiana is typically home to 10 to 12 different species, Picard said.
 
But in a hot summer like last year's, among the hottest on record, it's not surprising that this species headed north, she and Haskell agreed.
 
Another tropical blowfly species, the hairy maggot, also in the Chrysomya genus made it north a few years ago borne on the winds from Hurricane Katrina, Haskell said. He saw it for a few years after that and thought it was well-established but this year, he said, he has not seen any specimens.
 
With Indiana's cool summer this year, no one has seen another specimen of the megacephala species in Indiana.
 
"If this is a cold summer," said Picard, "it's possible we won't see it."
 

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Anthony Claret

Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.
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VIDEO: Autism study indicates new approach to treat condition

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Read Time:4 Minute, 36 Second
INDIANAPOLIS — A team of researchers from Indiana University and Rutgers University has developed a new approach that could help better pinpoint therapies for children with autism.
 
The method relies on a quantitative analysis of a way a person moves. Researchers say it could eventually revolutionize interventions for children who have a range of conditions, from autism to ADHD.
 
"We consider this more like a personalized medicine. … Everybody has his own motion DNA, and we need to find what is the right way for them to develop," said Jorge José, vice president of research at Indiana University. "We like to think of this as a complementary tool to diagnosis."
 
Autism is a complex developmental disorder that typically appears by the time a child is 3, but it affects children differently. However, it is often characterized by difficulties with verbal and non-verbal communication, social interactions and leisure or play activities.
 
About one in 96 people have autism, or more than 1.5 million people in the United States, according to the Autism Society of Indiana.
 
Two papers on the new diagnostic approach appeared Wednesday as part of a special collection of papers on autism and movement in the open-access journal Frontiers in Neuroscience.
 
José, a professor of cellular and integrative physiology at the Indiana University School of Medicine, teamed up with Rutgers University professor Elizabeth Torres who had the idea of taking an unorthodox look at autism. Torres, an assistant psychology professor, was shocked at how little attention autism scientists had paid to movement research.
 
Torres said researchers need to take a broader view of autism and recognize how closely linked movement and cognitive abilities can be.
 
VIDEO BELOW
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"This is a systemic problem. This is not a problem of mind. That's just the tip of the iceberg," she said of autism. "You have to look at the peripheral nervous system. Without that you can't think in high levels."
 
Some autism experts welcomed new perspectives in the ever-pervasive challenge of finding ways to help those with autism, a condition for which there is no cure.
 
With the number of diagnosed individuals increasing, this effort is welcome, said Susan Wilczynski, distinguished professor of special education and applied behavior analysis at Ball State University.
 
"I would say this is an exciting beginning, and we all look forward to additional work in this area," said Wilczynski, who is on the board of the Autism Society of Indiana.
 
However, she cautioned that the studies so far have been small ones and the scientists need to conduct additional research to bear out their findings. In addition, the authors' approach has more in common with certain therapies, such as applied behavior analysis, than they may think, Wilczynski said.
 
"This is one more tool that can teach children on the spectrum to take action to initiate with their environment, which is absolutely in their best interest but this isn't the only tool or their only exposure to learning how to be spontaneous and initiating and self-motivating," she said.
 
Torres' team started off by studying both typically developing children and children with autism, breaking down their tiny movements, both voluntary and involuntary.
 
The technique used a computer program that produces 240 images a second to track a person's random movements. Such measurements can shed light on a person's cognitive abilities, José said.
 
Unlike other ways of arriving at an autism diagnosis, this method relies on a scientific approach that can be checked and duplicated, Torres said.
 
"The way diagnosis is done (currently) is entirely based on observation and subjective criteria. There's nothing rigorous, no third party checks on you," she said. "There's a lot of room for improvement here because we have technology and we can even make better methods to actually tackle these issues in autism in a truly individualized way."
 
In the team's second study, the researchers explored whether this knowledge can form the basis of an intervention for children with autism.
 
Using a digital set-up along the lines of a Wii, they showed videos to 25 children with autism, many of whom were nonverbal. They asked the children to point to videos they liked.
 
By the age of 4, most typically developing children master the ability to make these voluntary movements in fairly standardized ways with little conscious thought. Autistic children, however, are more variable in how they will complete such a movement, Torres said. They tend to remain at about the level of a 3-year-old child and do not mature into a predictable set of patterns.
 
Over time, the trial showed, the children with autism learned how to master their motions and choose their favorite videos spontaneously.
 
This learning pattern may shed light on the best way to intervene for an individual child, Torres said. Many traditional forms of therapy, she argues, may hurt children with autism by inadvertently discouraging them from relying on coping mechanisms they have developed.
 
"As soon as we get funding, we have all the machinery in place to enlarge this on a massive scale so we can test thousands of people of all ages and genders," Torres said.

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Anthony Claret

Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.
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Top 30 common English words that are derived from names of people (IV)

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Read Time:6 Minute, 33 Second
21. Pasteurize. My scientist readers said they would not forgive me if I fail to mention this word in my list. Even people who aren’t medical scientists know that pasteurize means to boil food or water in order to kill the bacteria in them. The process of doing that is called pasteurization. The more common alternatives to “pasteurize” and “pasteurization” are “sterilize” and “sterilization.” Well, pasteurize is derived from Louise Pasteur (1822-95), the French chemist and microbiologist who discovered that it is bacteria that cause food, milk, wine, etc. to ferment. He recommended sterilization to reduce the risk of getting sick from fermented food.
22. Pavlovian. This word is often used as an adjective to mean predictable, unthinking, or knee-jerk reaction as in: the politician gave pavlovian answers to journalists’ questions during the news conference. The word owes its provenance to Ivan Petrovich Pavlov (1849-1936), a Russian physiologist and Nobel laureate “who discovered that the repetition of a stimulus conditions a predictable response pattern.” Pavlov famously conducted an experiment with a dog to test knee-jerk reflex action. He trained the dog to salivate when he rang a bell by making the dog relate the sound of a bell with the presence of food. So to be “pavlovian” means to do something automatically without thinking. 
 
23. Quisling. This word was brought to the mainstream of Nigerian English vocabulary from the early to the mid 1990s by Afenifere, the Yoruba political pressure group that was popular in southwest Nigeria until the late 2000s. The group described its erstwhile activists who served in the military regime of General SaniAbacha as “quislings.” A quisling is a collaborator with an enemy. In other words, he is a traitor, a betrayer. It is derived from Vidkun Abraham LauritzQuisling  (1887–1945), a Norwegian politician whocollaborated with the Nazis who took over Norway during World War II. He served as “Minister-President” during the three-year conquest of his country by the Nazis.After the defeat of the Nazis, Quisling was tried, found guilty of treason, and executed by firing squad. 
Quisling as a synonym for “traitor” entered English vocabulary in 1940 while Vidkun Quisling was still alive. It was first used by The Times, the conservative British newspaper famous for inventing the popular Times New Roman typeface. In an April 19, 1940 editorial titled “Quislings Everywhere,” The Times wrote: “To writers, the word Quisling is a gift from the gods. If they had been ordered to invent a new word for traitor… they could hardly have hit upon a more brilliant combination of letters. Aurally it contrives to suggest something at once slippery and tortuous.” 
A verb form of quisling, “quisle,” emerged but it was short-lived. It didn’t catch on. But other derivatives of the word have survived. A good example is quislingism, which a dictionary defines as the “act of cooperating traitorously with an enemy that is occupying your country.”
 
24. Quixotic.This word that means “foolishly idealistic” or unrealistic is traceable toDon Quixote, “the hero of novel Don Quixote de la Mancha by Spanish novelist Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra (1547-1616).” Since Quixote is only the name of a fictional character, it doesn’t fit well with the rest of the eponyms in this list, but I thought I would include it nonetheless.
 
25. Rachmanism. I admit that this is not a common word. It is a Briticism, that is, it is a uniquely British English expression that is absent in all other varieties of English.  Nonetheless, it has an entry in the Oxford English Dictionary, and I think Nigerians really need this word to give expression to what they suffer in the hands of landlords. The word means the “unscrupulous mistreatment of tenants.”  It is derived from Peter Rachman (1920-1962), scandalouslydishonest Polish Jew who immigrated to London and became a landlord in the 1950s. He was notorious for arbitrarily increasingrent, kicking out sitting tenants who had legal protection against sharp, sudden increases in rent, and replacing them with new tenants who had no legal protection against rent increases. Most of the people he exploited were black immigrants from the Caribbean Islands.
 
26. Ritzy.This word means fashionable, elegant, or posh. The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines it as “impressively or ostentatiously fancy or stylish.” The word originates from the Ritz hotels, which were founded by Swish hotel proprietor César Ritz who lived from1850 to 1918. Over the years, ritzy has also come to mean snobbish. 
 
27. Sadism.We all know this word to mean deriving pleasure from causing pain to others. A person who derives pleasure from other people’s pain is called a sadist. The adjectival form of sadism is sadistic. The word is derived from Donatien Alphonse Francois Marquis de Sade who lived from 1740 to 1814. Sade was aFrench revolutionary, philosopher, soldier,and sexual deviant who wrote books gleefully detailing how he derived sexual pleasure from inflicting pain on little girls in his village. He spent most of his life in French prisons from where he wrote many more books about sex and violence.
The opposite of sadism is masochism, which means the acts of deriving pleasure from inflicting pain on oneself. One who practices masochism is a masochist. The word is derived from Leopold von Sacher-Masoch, an Austrian journalist and writer.
 In his little book titled The Trouble with Nigeria, the late Chinua Achebe artfully deployed tis word. He wrote: “Only a masochist with an exuberant taste for self-violence will pick Nigeria for a holiday.” Ouch!
28. Silhouette.Dictionaries define this word as the outline of an object as cast by its shadow. This word is derived from Étienne de Silhouette who lived from 1709 to 1767. Silhouette was the equivalent of the minister of finance in France, and he was infamous for his anti-people economic policies that reduced people to a shadow of themselves, much like all Nigerian finance ministers have done. At first, silhouette became associated with belt-tightening, that is, a reduction of spending. It later came to be associated with portraiture because French people who couldn’t afford expensive paintings or sculpture, thanks to Silhouette’s harsh economic policies, simply drew a profile of their shadows on black papers and called it“silhouette.”
 
29. Spoonerism. This is a type of slip of the tongue or speech impediment “in which the first letters of two adjacent or close words are switched, as ‘I hissed your mystery class’” instead of “I missed your history class.” It is traced to Reverend William Archibald Spooner (1844-1930) identified as an Anglican clergyman and educator, dean who suffered from a speech defect that caused him to unintentionally mix up his consonants. In modern usage, spoonerisms are intentional and seek to achieve comical effects.
 
30. Teddy.  This is what Alphadictionary wrote about this word: “Short for teddy bear, a soft, stuffed toy in the shape of a bear. Named for Teddy, the nickname of President Theodore Roosevelt (1858-1919), once depicted in a famous cartoon sparing the life of a bear cub.”
 
Challenge
What current names do you predict will become common English words in dictionaries in the next 50 to 100 years? I will like to read your thoughts. My top pick is “Bushism,” “Bushist,” etc. after former President George W. Bush. These words are also in circulation in informal speech.
Concluded

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Anthony Claret

Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.
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Top 30 common English words that are derived from names of people (III)

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Read Time:6 Minute, 26 Second
15. Lynch/lynching. Most people know“lynch” to mean the extra-judicial murder, often by hanging, carried out by a gang of people. Over the years, hanging has ceased to be an intrinsic element in the conception of lynch. Any mob justice, even if it does not involve hanging, is now regarded as lynching: as in: the mob lynched the alleged witch in the market square.
In fact, in popular usage, lynching has now been figuratively extended to mean unfair public attacks on a person’s character. That was the sense of the term Black American Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas had in mind when he accused the American media of engaging in “high-tech lynching” for having a feeding frenzy on his past sexual misconduct during confirmation hearings in the US Senate in 1991. A person who takes part in lynching is a lyncher, and a group of people intent on lynching somebody is called a lynch mob. 
The etymology of this terrible word is shrouded in controversy, but no one doubts that it is an eponymous word derived from the name of a person whose last or middle name was Lynch. 
The first person from whose name the word is thought to be derived is an Irish man by the name of James Lynch Fitzstephen, who was the mayor of the city of Galway in the 1490s. History records that in 1493, he extra-judicially hanged his own son whom he found guilty of killing a Spanish visitor to Galway. I am dubious that the current usage of the word “lynch” owes any debt to James Lynch Fitzstephen’s murder of his son.
Other sources say the word owes its origins to one Capt. William Lynch who wrote “Lynch’s Law,” defined by Alphadictionary.com as “an agreement with the Virginia General Assembly in 1782 that allowed Lynch to capture and punish criminals in Pittsylvania County [in the United States] without trial due to the lack of courts in that county.” But this etymology, though popular, is disputed. 
There are at least two other contenders. Many American historians say the term Lynch law—from which“lynch” or“lynching” are derived—is traceable to one Charles Lynch who lived in the US state of Virginia from 1736 to 1796, that is, three decades before Capt. William Lynch was born. Charles Lynch was said to have appointed himself head of an extra-legal gang of people who summarily executed people that were loyal to British forces during the American Revolutionary War. 
Some people trace the origin of “lynch” to an apocryphal letter, wildly popular in African-American circles, supposedly written by a William (or Willie) Lynch, which gave slave owners advice on how to control slaves by keeping them divided among themselves. The letter has been found to be a hoax.
Whatever it is, lynch, lynching—and the word’s many collocations—didn’t become standard entries in English dictionaries until the 1850s.
 
16. Macadamize/macadamization. This is the word that inspired this series. Macadamize, as I wrote in the first installment of this series, is a grander, less familiar word for tar, as in: The government has budgeted billions to grade and macadamize hundreds of roads this year. The noun form of the word is macadam, which is the bigger word for “coal tar” or “tarmac.”The word owes its existence to John Loudon McAdam, a Scottish engineer and road-builder who lived from 1756 to1836. According to Alphadictionary, MacAdam was the first to propose“compacted crushed stone as a road covering.”In other words, he is the father of modern road construction. The word “tarmac” is also partly derived from his name; it is a blend of “tar” and “MacAdam.”
 
17. Maverick. I’ve noticed an interesting difference in the way this word is used in Nigerian and American English. In Nigeria, the word usually means a rebel, a renegade, or an unorthodox person, which is a legitimate meaning of the word. For instance, the Nigerian media habitually called former Biafran leader Chukwuemeka Ojukwu a maverick, and there is often a mild tone of disapproval in the description. In America, however, “maverick” has no negative associations. It’s often used to denote an independent-mindedperson; a person not held in check by group think or predetermined ideology.
 During the 2008 American presidential election,  Republican candidate John McCain and his running mate Sarah Palin never missed a chance to tell the American people that they were “mavericks.” Their excessive use of “maverick” to describe themselves caused the media to invent a jocular adjectival form of the word:  mavericky. I love that invention.
Well, “maverick” is derived from a Texas cattleman by the name of Samuel Augustus Maverick who was born in 1803 and died in1870. In Maverick’s time, cattle owners often burned their cows with a branding iron to indicate their ownership of the cows. But Maverick thought branding was cruel and refused to brand his cows. So when the cows strayed and mixed up, people who branded their cows easily recognized them. Since Maverick didn’t brand his own cows, other cattlemen automatically knew that the unbranded cattle were his. They called the unbranded cows “Maverick’s” and handed them over to him.
 The meaning of the word evolved from unbranded cows in Texas to stubborn independence, independence here referring to Maverick’s decision to buck a common practice by his peers.
 
18. Mesmerize/Mesmerism. To mesmerize is to, as Alphadictionary.com says, “fascinate someone to the point that they seem to be in a trance; to hypnotize.” This popular English verb came to the language from the last name of a German medical doctor by the name of Franz Anton Mesmer who lived from 1734 to 1815. He invented the science “animal magnetism,”through which he induced his patients into a sleep-like state, which made them susceptible to do anything he instructed them to do. That practice came to be known as mesmerism. A person who induces mesmerism is called a mesmerizer or a mesmerist. A Scottish medical doctor by the name of James Braid (1795-1860) who studied Mesmer’s methods later renamed mesmerism “hypnotism.”
 
19. Nicotine. This name for the“poisonous addictive chemical in tobacco smoke” is derived from Jean Nicot (1530-1600), a French diplomat, scholar, and lexicographer who introduced tobacco to France from Portugal where he served as French ambassador in the mid-16th century. Nicot believed tobacco had medical properties and actively advocated its use in the French society, particularly among the French elite. He became wildly popular in France in his time as a result of the acceptance of tobacco by the French nobility. The tobacco plant nicotiana is also named after him.
Apart from being a tobacco enthusiast, Nicot also had the distinction of compiling one of the earliest dictionaries in the French language.
 
20. Nosey parker (also spelled nosy parker). This chiefly British English work for a busybody, that is, a person who intrudes into other people’s business, is derived from  “Matthew Parker (1504-1575), Archbishop of Canterbury from 1559-1575, who developed a reputation for sticking his nose in other people’s business,” according to Alphadictionary.
To be concluded next week
 

About Post Author

Anthony Claret

Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.
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Top 30 common English words that are derived from names of people (II)

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Read Time:6 Minute, 59 Second
9. Dunce.  This alternative word for a stupid person owes its origins to John Duns Scotus, a previously well-regarded, beatified (i.e., declared as holy and worthy of reverence by the Catholic Church), Oxford-educated Catholic theologian who lived from about 1265 to 1308. European historians acknowledge him as one of the three most influential thinkers of his time, that is, the 12th and 13 centuries. People who subscribed to his philosophy were called “duns” or “dunsmen.” At the time the terms emerged they weren’t derogatory; they were merely descriptive. However, when many of Scotus’ ideas were disproved by the emergent philosophers of the English Reformation and his adherents still stubbornly clung to his discredited ideas, “duns” came to be associated with stupidity, especially obstinate stupidity. The spelling of “duns” evolved over time to the modern spelling. Other derivatives of the word are duncical or duncish (as in: “he is such a duncical/duncish bigot”), duncishness, and duncishly.
In American (and some English-speaking European) elementary schools, students are often made to wear “dunce caps” (pointed hats made of paper) and confined to the corner of the class as punishment for bad behaviour and stupidity.
Just like the example of chauvinism, the semantic evolution of “dunce” from a term to describe an adherent of the philosophy of Duns Scotus to a term that means an irredeemably stupid person illustrates how ideas that once commanded awe in one era can become the object of profound derision in later times.
 
10. Galvanize. Scientists use this word in association with electricity. In scientific usage, to galvanize is “to charge with electric current” or “to coat iron or steel with zinc by charging it with electricity.” In popular usage, however, the word usually means to rouse or stimulate a group of people to action (as in: he galvanized popular support for his policy). In other words, it means to inspire. 
The word is traced to Luigi Galvani (1739-1798), an Italian medical scientist and philosopherwell-known for his discovery that“the muscles of dead frogs legs twitched when struck by a spark.” Most of us non-scientists relate only to the word’s metaphoric extension, that is, to rouse to action. Other derivatives of the word are galvanization, galvanism, galvanizer (i.e., one who inspires people to action), galvanic (i.e., thrilling, as in: the union leader’s galvanic speech boosted workers’ resolve to embark on a strike), galvanist, galvanically.
 
11. Grangerize. To grangerize is defined in modern dictionaries as “illustrate a book with pictures, diagrams, etc. taken from other published sources.” The noun form of the word is grangerization, and it’s derived from James Granger (1723-76), “a British writer and clergyman, who published in 1769 a Biographical History of England with blank leaves for illustrations,” according to Alphadictionary.“The filling up of a ‘Granger’ became so popular that other books were published similarly.”
 
12. Guillotine. This instrument for cutting off people’s heads as punishment for wrongdoing is named after a popular French physician, medical reformist, and politician by the name of Joseph IgnaceGuillotin who lived from 1738 to 1814. Alphadictionary says the instrument is named after Dr. Guillotin because he invented it. But that’s inaccurate. The instrument was actually invented by a certain Dr. Antoine Louis. Guillotin became associated with it because he forcefully advocated its use as an alternative to the more cruel method of decapitation in France at the time, which was by hanging for poor people or by an axe or a sword for the rich. He called the guillotine “a machine that beheads painlessly.”
But it was not until he unwittingly claimed ownership of the machine during a speech that French people—and the rest of the world—named it after him, initially in jest. During a speech during which he made a case for the use of the decapitation machine (then called a “louisette” or “louison” in honor of its inventor) as a prelude to the total abolition of the death penalty, he said, “Now, with my machine, I cut off your head in the twinkling of an eye, and you never feel it!” The French press pilloried him for the seemingly blithe unconcern with which he spoke about decapitation, and the public jocularly called the machine his.
 In time, the machine came to be known as guillotine even in formal circles. When that semantic transition occurred, Guillotin’s family beseeched the French government to change the machine’s name to save the family from the infamy of being associated with the name of a decapitation machine. The government didn’t oblige them, but gave them the option to change their last names to something else, which they did. Interestingly, according to French historians, a Dr. Guillotin, who is no relation of Dr. Joseph IgnaceGuillotin, was once beheaded by the guillotine. Many people at the time thought it was the famous Dr. Guillotin that had been beheaded by the machine that was named after him.
According to the fourth edition of the American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language published in 2000, the first recorded use of “guillotine” in the English language occurred in the Annual Register of 1793, and it went thus: “At half past 12 the guillotine severed her head from her body.” Today, guillotine has assumed other semantic and metaphorical extensions. For instance, it is used in parliamentary jargon to mean “closure imposed on the debate of specific sections of a bill.” The word is also used as a verb. Another popular derivative of guillotine is guillotiner, which is the name of a person who operates the guillotine. 
 
13. Hooligan/Hooliganism. This common word for an uncultured, rough, ill-bred, rude, and aggressive person is derived, according to some accounts, from the last name of an Irish family that was notorious for its rowdiness in 1890s Ireland. But an 1899 book titled Hooligan Nights by a Clarence Rook casts doubt on this etymology. The book is quoted to have averred that “hooligan” is derived from a certain Patrick Hooligan (also sometimes spelled Hoolihan), a notoriously boorish Irish man who made a living by stealing and throwing troublemakers out of bars for pay in London. That is probably why “Hooligan” (with a capital “H”)originally meant a gang of young people who fought in bars and destroyed property.
 I am inclined to believe Rook’s etymology both because of the date of the publication of his book (which came out at precisely the same time that the word emerged, meaning his account is likely to be fresh and faithful to the facts) and because the author associates the word with England rather than Ireland. The English association of the word is substantiated by ample corroboratory evidence.  For instance, the influential but now discontinued Daily Graphic newspaper, in an August 22, 1898 article, was quoted to have written the following: “The avalanche of brutality which, under the name of ‘Hooliganism’ … has cast such a dire slur on the social records of South London.”
Superior evidence might well disprove Rook’s etymology, but what is not in dispute is that Hooligan (or Hoolihan) was/is a popular Irish last name and that someone or some people with that last name was/were notorious for noisy, disruptive, and disreputable behavior.
 
14. Luddite. We know this word in modern English as a person who is opposed to progress, especially technological progress; someone one who is stuck in the past and dreads change.It is derived from “Ned Ludd, an English laborer who was supposed to have destroyed weaving machinery around 1779 after being replaced by it.” AfterLudd destroyed the machines that took his job (instead of learning to use them), groups of English workmen who were inspired by his example took on the destruction of machine as an organized activity. They thought machines were harbingers of unemployment.
To be continued

About Post Author

Anthony Claret

Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.
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Top 30 common English words that are derived from names of people (I)

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Read Time:6 Minute, 38 Second
A few weeks ago, I had a lighthearted discussion with a friend about my abiding fascination with unusual words and their etymologies (that is, their origin, history, and development) and told the story of how I once wowed my classmates in high school when I told them “macadamize” was another word for “tar,” that is, to coat a stretch of land, usually a road, with a dark, coarse, heavy substance to make vehicular movement smooth.
My classmates were even more tickled when I shared my discovery that “macadamize” is derived from “macadam,” which is derived from the name of a person. 
As I shared the story with my friend, I remembered three other common English words that are derived from the names of people: bowdlerize, chauvinism, and mesmerize. As I kept remembering more such words, I said to myself: I can actually write a full column on eponyms, as grammarians call everyday words that are derived from the names of actual persons or places.
In order to come up with more words, I searched on Google to see if anyone has compiled a list of English words in common usage that are derived from names of historical personages. I was looking specifically for words that are so integrated into English vocabulary that everyday speakers of the language hardly have any clue that they were not considered “real” words a couple of years back. Then I came across alphadictionary.com, a truly fascinating site that has, in my opinion, one of the most impressive lists of English eponyms. 
What follows is a list of my 30 favorite English eponyms. The list is inspired as much by my recollections of my fascination with etymologies in high school as it is by the great work in alphadictionary.com.1. Algorithm. Many people, especially scientists, know this word as the formula or procedure for calculations. As a new media scholar, I relate to the word as the mysterious formula by which search engines rank pages on the Internet, as in: “Google’s search algorithms.” It even has a cute adjectival inflection (algorithmic) and an even cuter adverbial inflection (algorithmically). 
Well, “algorithm” is derived from the name of a Muslim scientist by the name of Abu AbdallahMu?ammadibn Musa al-Khwarizmi who lived from780 to 850 in what is now Iraq and who had the distinction of being the pioneer of the branch of mathematics called “algebra,” itself derived from an Arabic word that means “restoration.” Alphadictionary.com refers to him an “Arabic mathematician, born in Baghdad, who showed that any mathematical problem, no matter how difficult, could be solved if broken down into a series of smaller steps (an algorithm).”
Although Alphadictionary identifies him as an “Arabic mathematician,” he was actually Persian, that is, he shared the same linguistic and cultural identity with present-day Iranians. “Al-Khwarizmi” ended up as “algorithm” because Arabs pronounced it “Al-Khwarithmi,” which Western scholars in turn rendered as “algorithm.”
 
2. Biro. This common word for pen in Britain and most Commonwealth countries, including Nigeria, is the last name of a Hungarian inventor who invented the object“that has a small metal ball as the point of transfer of ink to paper.” He was born in 1900 and died in 1985. His full name is Biro LaszloJozsef. In Hungary, people’s last names are written first. So a Western rendering of his name would beLaszlo Jozsef Biro.
 
3. Braille. This word can be both a noun and a verb. As a noun, it means“a point system of writing in which patterns of raised dots represent letters and numerals” to help blind people read. It can be used as a verb to mean transcribe a piece of writing into braille, as in: he brailled the note so his blind friend could read it. 
The word is derived from Louis Braille, a French educator and musician who became blind when he was only three years old and who later went on to invent a system of writing and printing that is used all over the world by the blind. He was born in 1809 and died in 1852. 
 
4. Bowdlerize. To bowdlerize is to remove parts (of a novel, article, TV program, etc.) that are considered undesirable or unsuitable. The word’s synonyms are “expurgate,” “edit out,” “shorten,” etc. It is sometimes used in place of “censor.”  The noun form of “bowdlerize” is “bowdlerization.”
It’s derived from the name of a British medical doctor by the name of Thomas Bowdler(1754 -1825) who is famous for publishing a heavily edited, family-friendly, multi-volume version of William Shakespeare’s works, which he titled The Family Shakspeare [sic]. (Until fairly recently, Shakespeare was spelled without “e” after “k”). He edited out violent scenes, removed passages referring to sex, deleted all fictional representations of prostitutes, and replaced curse words with more children-friendly exclamations, etc. in all of Shakespeare’s works. He did a similar thing for Edward Gibbon’s iconicDecline and Fall of the Roman Empire, which was published a year after Bowdler’s death.
Thus, to bowdlerize is to clean up a passage, an article, a book, a broadcast program, etc., to make it acceptable to a section of people. The process of doing that is called bowdlerization.
 
5. Boycott. This common word for refusing to have anything to do with something or somebody is derived from the name Charles C. Boycott (1832–97), a ruthless “English estate manager in Ireland, against whom nonviolent coercive tactics were used in 1880,” according to Alphadictionary.com. The Times, the popular British daily newspaper is credited with being the first to use the term “boycott” to mean social isolation of an oppressor. The “b” in “boycott” used to be capitalized to indicate that it was the name of a person. Or it had quotation marks around it to show that it was not standard usage. Over the years, however, the capitalization and quotation marks were dropped, and the word became entrenched in English lexicon first as a verb and later as a noun.
 
6. Chauvinism. This word for zealously unreasoning belief in the superiority of a group of people is traceable to Nicolas Chauvin, “a French soldier in Napoleon’s army famous for his fanatical devotion to the Emperor.” Born around 1780, he was said to have enlisted in the French army at 18 and got wounded more times during war than any French soldier, leaving him with permanent physical deformities. His uncommon devotion to his country became the subject of derision and revulsion only after Napoleon Bonaparte and his political philosophy (which Chauvin passionately believed in and stoutly defended) fell into disfavor with the French public. From then on, chauvinism acquired a pejorative connotation. Other derivatives of chauvinism are chauvinist, chauvinistic, chauvinistically. 
 
7. Casanova. Alphadictionary.com’s entry on this word is worth reproducing verbatim: “A philanderer, gigolo, an irresponsible lover who has many affairs with women. Giovanni Jacopo Casanova (1725-1798), Italian charlatan and social climber, who wrote several books, translated the Iliad but is most notorious for his History of my Life, which focuses on his many romantic conquests.”
 
8. Diesel. I had no idea that diesel, the thick, greasy oil that powers engines, was derived from the name of a person.  It’s named after its inventor identified as Rudolf Christian Karl Diesel (1858-1913), who was a French-born German engineer.
To be continued

About Post Author

Anthony Claret

Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.
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