Now, the VOA Special English program, Words and Their
Computer technology has become a major part of people's
lives. This technology has its own special words. One example is the word mouse.
A computer mouse is not a small animal that lives in buildings and open
fields. It is a small device that you
move around on a flat surface in front of a computer. The mouse moves the pointer, or cursor, on
the computer screen.
expert Douglas Engelbart developed the idea for the mouse in the early
nineteen-sixties. The first computer
mouse was a carved block of wood with two metal wheels. It was called a mouse
because it had a tail at one end. The tail was the wire that connected it to
a computer takes some training. People
who are experts are sometimes called hackers.
A hacker is usually a person
who writes software programs in a special computer language. But the word hacker is also used to describe
a person who tries to steal information from computer systems.
Another well known computer word is Google, spelled g-o-o-g-l-e. It is the name of a popular "search engine"
for the Internet. People use the search
engine to find information about almost any subject on the Internet. The people who started the company named it
Google because in mathematics, googol, spelled g-o-o-g-o-l, is an extremely
large number. It is the number one
followed by one-hundred zeros.
When you "Google" a subject, you can get a large amount
of information about it. Some people like to Google their friends or themselves
to see how many times their name appears on the Internet.
you Google someone, you might find that person's name on a blog. A blog is the
shortened name for a Web log. A blog is
a personal Web page. It may contain
stories, comments, pictures and links to other Web sites. Some people add
information to their blogs every day. People who have blogs are called
are not the same as spam. Spam is unwanted sales messages sent to your
electronic mailbox. The name is based on
a funny joke many years ago on a British television show, "Monty Python's
Flying Circus." Some friends are at an
eating place that only serves a processed meat product from the United States
called SPAM. Every time the friends try to speak, another group of people
starts singing the word SPAM very loudly.
This interferes with the friends' discussion – just as unwanted sales
messages interfere with communication over the Internet.
VOA Special English program, WORDS AND THEIR STORIES, was written by Jill
Moss. I'm Faith Lapidus.