“I Hate Acronyms” Glossary

If you know me well, you know that I am a big opponent of acronyms.  I am not sure how or when they got started but I know they serve to confuse a lot of humans and cause a significant amount of miscommunication.  I have sat in many a meeting where two people are talking about two different topics but they are use the same acronyms and have no idea they are talking about different things.  So, in this section of the blog, I hope to clarify any acronyms that might pop up.  Who knows, we might also clear up a few of them for you.

Feel free to add your own in the comments section and I will pick them up periodically.

Let’s get started!!

AF – Automation Federation www.automationfederation.org

ISA – International Society of Automation www.isa.org

ISO – I always throw this one in becuase it serves to illustrate my point.  Many people think think that ISO stands for International Standards Organization.  If you are among the many that believe that, please read on.  ISO is actually a latin derivative.  I copy the following directly form the ISO website. 

Because “International Organization for Standardization” would have different acronyms in different languages (“IOS” in English, “OIN” in French for Organisation internationale de normalisation), its founders decided to give it also a short, all-purpose name. They chose “ISO”, derived from the Greek isos, meaning “equal”. Whatever the country, whatever the language, the short form of the organization’s name is always ISO.

TLA – Three Letter Acronym or Two Letter Acronym

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One Response to ““I Hate Acronyms” Glossary”

  • Comment from Manny Gutierrez

    I also hate acronyms. I spent my entire working life dealing with them in the Quality Assurance and non-destructive testing fields as a worker to general manager. (Q.A/NDT urggg)
    The first defense against complaining was “you should learn the terminology used in your field” Acronyms are so convenient but only the people in your field recognize them, sometimes even members of the same company but different departments do not know what they are, and if you are a self serving insecure “professional” it gives you a sense of satisfaction that you have the edge on others due to acronyms, after all “knowledge is power” isn’t it? I kept reminding our supervisors to use terms which the rank and file would understand. Acronyms are overused and new ones keep getting created. “based on our ISO program Procedures and W.I’s, we must pt, lpi, rt and process according to ASME-ASTM” wtf is my request? (acronyms complicated by abbreviations).Look up instructions on California’s Water Board requirements. Ridiculous! Acronyms are a necessary evil at times, but make sure you have in your company a CCEMT (California certified Enigma machined technician).

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