ABBREVIATIONS, TERMS AND DEFINITIONS
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A B C D E F G H I J K L M
N O P Q R S T U V W X Y  
 
- M -
m - Metre(s); male; married; mile(s); million

MA - Master of Arts

Macintosh computer - A device and operating system, now superseded by PowerMac models and the Mac OS.

mailbombs - some person of limited imagination sends a huge number of emails to someone, in the hope that the volume of data will crash their machine.

Maj - Major

MajorDomo - A mailing list manager that processes email requests.

Man. - Management

Mans - Mansions

Mar. - March; Maritime

Maritime Distress Channel - An INMARSAT satellite channel between a ship in distress and a coast earth station assigned in response to a distress-priority request message.

Maritime mobile satellite-service - A mobile-satellite service in which mobile earth stations are located onboard ships; survival craft stations and emergency position-indicating radiobeacon stations may also participate in this service.

Maritime mobile service - A mobile service between coast stations and ship stations, or between ship stations, or between associated on-board communication stations; survival craft stations and emergency position-indicating radiobeacon stations may also participate in this service.

Maritime Safety Information (MSI) - Navigational and meteorological warnings, meteorological forecasts, distress alerts and other urgent safety related information broadcast to ships.

Maritime SAR plan - A plan developed by coastal States following formal agreement between the parties concerned, based on SAR facilities previously declared, and including appropriate arrangements for providing SAR services in accordance with the 1979 SAR Convention.

masc - masculine

math - (US) mathematics

maths - (GB) mathematics

max - maximum

MB - Bachelor of Medicine

MC - (US) Marine Corps; Master of Ceremonies; (US) Member of Congress; (GB) Military Cross

MCC - (GB) Marylebone Cricket Club (the governing body of English cricket)

Mc - Megacycle(s)

MD - Doctor of Medicine

Med(it) - Mediterranean

MES - Mobile Earth Stations - For maritime use they are termed Ship Earth Stations (SES) and on land they are termed Land Earth Stations (LES) or Land Mobile Earth Stations (LMES).

MF - Medium frequency (300 - 3000 kHz)

mg - milligram(s)

Mgr - Monsignor

MHz - Megahertz

MI5 - (GB) National Security Division of Military Intelligence

Microsoft - Software company that produce Windows & Windows NT OS.

MID - Maritime identification digits

MIDI - Musical Instrument Digital Interface. This refers to the industry standard for the physical connection of a musical instrument to a computer. If you see a sound file with the suffix mid, then it will probably have been produced via this method.

min - Minute(s); minimum

misc - miscellaneous

Mission Control Centre (MCC) - A COSPAS-SARSAT ground system element which receives alert data from its local user terminal(s) and distributes that information to affiliated SAR points of contact or forwards it to other MCCs. The MCC may also receive alert data from another MCC and receive and distribute COSPAS-SARSAT system information.

mkt - market

ml - mile(s); millilitre(s)

mm - millimetre(s)

MMSI - Maritime Mobile Selective-call Identify code (as in DSC)

MO - Mail Order; Medical Officer; Money Order

mod cons - modern conveniences

mod - moderate; modern

modem - a contraction of modulator/demodulator. An analogue to digital signal converter.

Mon - Monday

MP - Member of Parliament (House of Commons); Military Police

MPEG - Motion Picture Experts Group. A compression format for video enabling high-quality picture sequences to be stored on disk. The more common version, MPEG II, offers even higher compression rates than its predecessor, which means that more images can be stored in less space.

mpg - miles per gallon

mph - miles per hour

Mr - Mister

Mrs - Mistress

Ms - Miss; Ms Title prefixed to the (first name and the) surname of a woman, whether married or unmarried. Ms may be used if we do not know whether the woman to whom we are writing is single or married. If we are writing to a married woman who prefers to use her maiden name, then we should address her as Ms or Miss, followed by her own Christian name or initials.

MS(S) - Manuscript(s)

ms - Millisecond(s)

MSc - Master of Science

MT - Motor Tanker

Mt - Mount

MUDs - Multiuser Dimensions, other worlds where you can create characters and environments in a shared, distributed digital space. Fantasy lands.

multimedia - This term refers to the use of sound and graphics. If you bought a "multimedia PC", you would probably find that it comes with a sound card, speakers or headphones, a CD-ROM drive (to store sound and images) and will have enough memory and disk space for sound and image files.

multithreading - An operating system feature which allows an appropriately-designed program to run several tasks concurrently.
 
- N -
N - north

NAAFI - Navy, Army and Air Force Institute

nat - national; native; natural

National DSC frequencies - Frequencies assigned to individual coast stations or groups of stations on which DSC calling is permitted (this may include working frequencies as well as calling frequencies). The use of these frequencies must be in accordance with Radio Regulations.

NATO - North Atlantic Treaty Organization

Nav. - Navigation

NAVAREA - Short title of an area in the world-wide navigational warning service.

NAVAREA warning - Long-range warning broadcasts issued by an area co-ordinator of the world-wide navigational warning service for his area and broadcast by powerful station or stations to cover the whole of the area, for which the area co-ordinator is responsible, and parts of adjacent area.

Navigation safety communications - Intership VHF radiotelephone communications for the purpose of assisting the safe movement of ships.

NAVTEX - Narrow-band direct-printing telegraphy system on 518 kHz for transmission of navigational and meteorological warnings and urgent information to ships. See also: International NAVTEX Service.

NB - nota bene take special note of

NBDP - Narrow Band Direct Printing

NCO - Non-Commissioned Officer

NCS - Network Go-ordination Station (for INMARSAT)

NE - northeast

NHS - (GB) National Health Service

N MILE - International nautical mile

NM - Notice to Mariners

NNE - north-northeast

NNW - north-northwest

NON - Unmodulated continuous wave emission

no(s) - number(s)

non-U - not upper class; vulgar

Nov - November

nr - near

NRT - Net Registered Tonnage

NSF - The American National Science Foundation

NSFNet - The NSF's network of five supercomputers

NSPCC - (GB) National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children

NT - New Testament

NW - northwest

NY(C) - New York (City)

NZ - New Zealand
 
- O -
O & M - organisation and method

OAP - (GB) old-age pensioner

OAS - (US) Organisation of American States

OAU - Organisation of African Unity

ob - obiit died

OCC - Operations Control Centre (for INMARSAT)

Occas - Occasional

Oct - October

OECD - Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development

OHMS - On His/Her Majesty's Service

O-level - (GB) Ordinary level (examination)

On-scene commander - The commander of a rescue unit designated to co-ordinate surface search and rescue operations within a specified search area.

On-scene communications - Communications between the ship in distress and assisting units.

ono - or nearest offer

op cit - opere citato in the work mentioned

op - opus; operation

OPEC - Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries

opp - opposite

orch - orchestra(l); orchestrated

OS - Ordinary Seaman

OSI - Open Systems Interconnect

OT - Old Testament

Oxon - Oxoniensis of Oxford University; Oxfordshire

oz - ounce(s)
 
- P -
P - Parking

p - page; penny, pence; per

PA - Position Approximate; Personal Assistant; Press Association; Public Address (System)

pa - per annum per year

PACKET - This is a unit of data, which is typically a part of a file, prepared for transmission across a network.

Packet switching - Transmission technique for routing slices of data between destinations between which there is no predefined path.

para(s) - paragraph(s)

Paired frequencies - Frequencies which are associated in pairs; each pair consisting of one transmitting and one receiving frequency.

parallel port - This refers to a plug-and-socket connection that can transfer a complete byte of data at a time (serial ports transfer only one bit at a time). Mainly used for plugging a printer into your PC.

PASV Transfer Mode - PASV Mode forces "data" connections to be established by the client, rather than the server (which is the default). PASV Mode may be required for users who are behind a router-based firewall.

PAYE - pay as you earn

PC - (GB) Police Constable; (GB) Privy Councillor; (US) Peace Corps

PCI - Peripheral Component Interconnect. This is a standard bus design for computer motherboards and expansion slots that can transfer 32 or 64 bits of data at one time. Its expansion slots are compatible with ISA cards, too. PCI has taken over as the standard format for modern PCs.

PCMCIA - Now called PC card, this refers to a method of expanding your computer's capabilities via a credit card-sized connection. Despite the elegance and simplicity of this approach, particularly by comparison with the somewhat crude plug-in adapter card, high costs mean PC cards are used mainly on portable computers.

pd - paid

PDSA - People's Dispensary for Sick Animals

PE - physical education

PEN - International Association of Writers

PG - Paying Guest

Ph D - Doctor of Philosophy

Pk - Park

pkt - packet

Pl - Place

PLC, Plc, plc - public limited company

PM - Prime Minister

pm - post meridiem after noon; per month

PO - Personnel Officer; Petty Officer; Post Office; Postal Order

PO Box - Post Office Box

POE - Port of Entry

Polar Orbiting Satellite Service - A service which is based on polar orbiting satellites which receive and relay distress alerts from satellite EPIRBs and which provides their position.

POP - Point of Presence. An Internet server accessible to a community of subscribers.

pop - popular; population

POR - Pacific Ocean Region, coverage area of INMARSAT satellite

Positioning - Establishing the geographical place of the unit in distress (normally expressed in degrees and minutes of latitude and longitude).

poss - possible; possibly

POW - Prisoner of War

pp - pages

pp - per procurationem on behalf of (precedes name of person signed for)

PPP - Point to Point Protocol. Sends data packets over serial lines and supports asynchronous and synchronous systems.

PPS - post postscriptum additional postscript

pr - pair; price

PR - Public Relations

Pres - President

Preventive actions - Collecting, sorting and disseminating information or taking other actions which will either help to reduce the number of distress incidents or, when they occur, will facilitate rescue or expedite the SAR operation.

pro tem - pro tempore for the time being; temporarily

PRO - Public Records Office; Public Relations Officer

pro - professional

Prof - Professor

pron - pronounced; pronunciation

Prot - Protestant

Prov - Province

Ps - Psalm

PS - Postscript

PSBR - public sector borrowing requirement

PST - (US) Pacific Standard Time

pt - part; payment; pint; point

PT - Physical Training

PTA - Parent-Teacher Association

Pte - (GB) Private (soldier)

PTO - Please turn over

Pty - Proprietary

PV - Pilot Vessel

Pvt - (US) Private (soldier)

pw - per week

PX - post exchange (US equivalent of NAAFI)
 
- Q -
QC - Queen's Counsel

QED - quod erat demonstrandum which had to be proved

qt - quart

qv - quod vide which may be referred to
 
- R -
R - River; Royal

r - radius; right

R3E - Telephony using amplitude modulation: single sideband, reduced carrier.

R & D - research and development

RA - Rear-Admiral; Royal Academy; Royal Academician

RADA - Royal Academy of Dramatic Art

Radio Regulations - Means the Radio Regulations annexed to, or regarded as being annexed to, the most recent International Telecommunication Convention which is in force at any time.

Radiotelegraph auto alarm - An automatic alarm receiving apparatus which responds to the radiotelegraph alarm signal and has been approved.

RAF - Royal Air Force

RAM - Random Access Memory where anything can happen, depending on the software and the imagination that bags it.

RAM - Royal Academy of Music

RC - Red Cross; Roman Catholic

RCM - Royal College of Music

Rd - Road

rec(d) - received

ref - referee; reference; refer(red)

Rep - Repertory; Representative; Republic(an)

Repd - Reported

res - residence; resigned; reserved

Rescue Co-ordination Gentre (RCC) - A unit responsible for promoting efficient organization of search and rescue (SAR) services and for co-ordinating the conduct of search and rescue operations within a search and rescue region.

Rescue unit - A unit composed of trained personnel and provided with equipment suitable for the expeditious conduct of search and rescue operations.

resp - respectively

Responsible Operator Position (ROP) - A point of the distress-priority call destination from which an operator handles the call in compliance with national instructions. This position may be under the authority of either the national SAR Agency or Telecommunications Administration. A responsible operator position (ROP) may be located at the CES, telecommunications switching centre, SAR agency/RCC or remote from any listed locations.

ret(d) - retired

rev - revolution

Rev(d) - Reverend

rh - right hand

RIP - requiescat/requiescant in pace may he/they rest in peace

RISC - Reduced Instruction Set Computer. This is a type of CPU which can reduce to a minimum the number of instructions that are processed simultaneously, thereby increasing the computer's efficiency.

rly - railway

rm - room

RM - Royal Marines

RN - Royal Navy

ROM - Read Only Memory, where the only instructions carried out are those for which the memory has been programmed.
A chunk of memory containing prewritten instructions, typically in the form of chips on circuit boards or as non-rewritable instructions on a CD-ROM. Stored in ROM are basic functions like the power-on procedures for your PC.

ROT13 - A substitution cypher which warns you that a newsgroup's discussion could well offend you, in case you are of a sensitive disposition.

router - In packet-switching network, such as the Internet, a router is a device which examines packets of data and sends them to their appropriate destination.

rpm - revolutions per minute

RSM - Regimental Sergeant Major; Royal School of Music

RSPCA - Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals

RSVP - repondez s'il vous plait please reply

RT - Radio telephony

rt - right

Rt Hon - Right Honourable

Rt Rev - Right Reverend

R(S)V - Revised (Standard) Version (of the Bible)

RU - Rugby Union

Rx - Receiver
 
- S -
S - south

s - Second(s)

SA - South Africa

sae - stamped addressed envelope

SALT - Strategic Arms Limitation Talks

SAR - Search And Rescue

SAR co-ordinating communications - Communications necessary for the co-ordination of ships and aircraft participating in a search resulting from a distress incident.

SAR point of contact (SPOC) - In the COSPAS-SARSAT system mission control centres (MCCs), rescue co-ordination centres (RCCs) and other established and recognized national points of contact which can accept responsibility for the co-ordination of the rapid and effective transfer of alert data to enable the rescue of people in distress.

SARSAT - Search and rescue satellite aided tracking.

Sat - Saturday

Satellite emergency position-indicating radiobeacon - An earth station in the mobile-satellite service, the emissions of which are intended to facilitate search and rescue operations.

SAYE - save as you earn

sc - scilicet namely

s/c - self-contained

Sch - School

sci - science

SCSI - Small Computer Systems Interface. This is a method of attaching storage and other devices to a PC. It's versatile, because a single SCSI adapter can handle a mix of up to eight different devices - generally these will be such things as hard drives, CD-ROM drives, and scanners. But the cheaper solution tends to be EIDE for disks and a separate adapter for other devices.

SDR - Special Drawing Right. 1 SDR = 3.061 gold francs

SE - southeast

Sea area Al, A3, A3 and A4 - See Basic Concept of GMDSS.

Search and rescue (SAR) region - An area of defined dimensions within which search and rescue services are provided.

sec - second(ary); secretary

SEN - State Enrolled Nurse

Sen - Senate; Senator; Senior

Sept - September

Seq - Sequence

serial port - A socket that can transfer one bit of information at a time (parallel ports can transfer an entire byte at a time). Used primarily for modems, occasionally for a mouse, sometimes for other devices.

Service area - A part of the world within which a COSPAS-SARSAT alert data distribution service is provided by the mission control centre (MCC).

SF - Science Fiction

sgd - signed

SGML - Standardized General Markup Language

Sgt - Sergeant

SHAPE - Supreme Headquarters of Allied Powers in Europe

SHAREWARE - This is software that's available on a try-before-you-buy basis. Typically, the prospective purchaser downloads the product from the Internet or loads it from a disk, and gets a specified period of use before having to buy and register it. This will be enforced by either your own moral values or by "nag" screens which pop up at regular intervals.

Ship Earth Station (SES) - A mobile earth station in the maritime mobile-satellite service located on board ship.

Ship station -A mobile station in the maritime mobile service located on board a vessel which is not permanently moored, other than a survival craft station.

SI units - Systeme International d'Unites International System of Units

Sig - Signal

SIMM - Single In-line Memory Module - small circuit boards holding a row of memory chips; you plug them into special sockets on the motherboard. It's a simple and compact way to add memory to a PC.

Single frequency - The same frequency used for transmission and reception.

SLIP - Serial Line Interface Protocol. A protocol for sending data packets over serial lines.

SLIP/PPP - Serial Line Interface Protocol/Point to Point Protocol. These are standards for connecting directly to the Internet rather than simply logging on to it via a host computer.

SMTP - Simple Mail Transfer Protocol that defines the rules by which computers transfer mail messages.

Sn(r) - Senior

Soc - Society

Sol - Solicitor

SOLAS - Safety of Life at Sea

SOS - international distress signal

sp gr - specific gravity

sp - special; spelling

Sp - Spain; Spanish

spamming - sending often useless messages to vast numbers of people.

Sq - Square

Sr - Senior; Sister

SRN - State Registered Nurse

SS - Steamship

SSB - Single SideBand

SSE - south-southeast

SSFC - Sequential Single-Frequency Code System

SSW - south-southwest

St - Saint; Street

Sta - Station

STD - subscriber trunk dialling (telephone); sexually-transmitted disease => VD below

Stn - Station

Str - Strait; Street

sub(s) - subscription; substitute

Sum - Summer

Sun - Sunday

SUN Microsystems - The people who developed and still sell general-purpose computers running under the Unix operating system.

Supt - Superintendent

Survival craft - A craft capable of sustaining the lives of persons in distress from the time of abandoning the ship.

Survival craft station - A mobile station in the maritime mobile service or in the aeronautical mobile service intended solely for survival purposes and located on any lifeboat, lifecraft or other survival equipment.

SW - southwest

swap file - Also known as virtual memory, this is a portion of your hard disk drive set aside for windows to use as a cache, basically to speed up transfers to and from disk.

System information - In the COSPAS-SARSAT system tabulated data (ephemeris and time calibration) that affect the determination of distress beacon locations using the satellite sub-track; current status of all system elements; information related to interference.
 
- T -
T - temperature

t - time; ton(s)

TB - Tuberculosis

TCP/IP - Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol. Together these two dialects comprise the universal language for the digital word, or at least its vowel set. They are the glue that holds the Internet together.

Tech - Technical (College)

Tel - Telephone

Telnet - Internet Protocol that allows one machine to appear on a remote screen.

temp - temperature; temporary (secretary)

temp inop - Temporarily inoperative

Ter(r) - Terrace; Territory

Thurs - Thursday

Time calibration - Data used to relate the SARSAT satellite time code in an alert message to the actual elapsed time from a known satellite time epoch. In association with the ephemeris data, the corrected satellite time information in each satellite processed beacon transmission is used to determine the location of the transmitting beacon.

Time of closest approach (TCA) - The time that the satellite is closest to the beacon during a satellite pass.

TKO - technical knock-out

TNT - Tri-nitro-toluene explosive

trans - translated

treas - treasurer

Trspn - Transportation

TSS - Traffic Separation Scheme

TU - Trade Union

TUC - (GB) Trades Union Congress

Tues - Tuesday

TV - television

Tx - Transmitter; Transmission
 
- U -
U - Union; Upper; upper class, fashionable, polite, => non-U above

UART - The Universal Asynchronous Receiver/Transmitter chip controls the transfer of data over a serial port, which in practice means the information that has to pass between your modem and PC. For modern modems, you will need at least a 16550 (or, even better, a 16650) UART chip rather than the older, and more limited, 8550 type that is still encountered on some PCs.

UDI - unilateral declaration of independence

UDP - User Datagram Protocol. A poor relation to TCP, used for transmitting a measly 1500 characters.

ufn - Until further notice

UFO - unidentified flying object

UHF - ultra high frequency

UK - United Kingdom

UN - United Nations

UNCTAD - United Nations Conference on Trade and Development

UNESCO - United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation

UNICEF - United Nation's Childrens Fund

UNINSTALLER - when you want to get rid of a program, if you simply delete it, you will you leave files scattered throughout the hard drive, and they take up valuable disk space. An uninstaller utility logs what happened when the program was originally installed so it can backtrack to remove all files and restore the original parameters in key functions like the Windows 95 registry.

Univ - University

Unix - A multi-tasking operating system widely used on the Internet.

UNO - United Nations Organisation

UNRWA - United Nations Relief and Works Agency

UPI - United Press International

upload - Transferring a file from your local workstation to a remote host or workstation.

URL - Universal Resource Locator, or Uniform Resource Locator as it's now known; specifies an Internet resource.

US - United States

USAF - United States of America; United States Army

UseNet - Contraction of User's Network, a bulletin board system for newsgroups which can operate independently of the Internet, although this is by far the most common means of access.

USN - United States Navy

USS - United States Ship

USSR - Union of Soviet Socialist Republics

USF - United States Air Force

UT - Universal Time

UTO - Uncorrected Universal Time

UT1 - UTO corrected for polar variation

UT2 - UTO corrected for polar and seasonal variation

UTC - Co-ordinated Universal Time
 
- V -
V - Roman 5; victory; volt

v - very; verse; versus; vide see, refer to

V & A - Victoria and Albert (Museum in London)

vac - vacation

VAT - Value Added Tax

VC - Vice Chairman; Vice Chancellor; Vice Consult; Victoria Cross; Vietcong

VD - Venereal Disease => STD above

VDU - visual display unit

VE Day - Victory in Europe (end of Second World War in Europe: 8.5.1945)

Ven - Venerable

VHF - Very High Frequency (30 - 300 MHz)

VIP - very important person

Virus - A digital invader propagated by rogue software programmers.

viz - videlicet namely

VLCC - Very Large Crude Carrier

VLF - Very Low Frequency

vol - volume

VP(res) - Vice-President

VRAM - Video Random Access Memory. This term refers to a special type of DRAM that is commonly used on video controllers in order to speed up the rate at which images are displayed, thus improving the visual quality of graphics-intensive applications.

v(s) versus

VS - (US) Veterinary Surgeon

VSO - (GB) Voluntary Service Overseas

VTM - Vessel Traffic Management

VTS - Vessel Traffic Service
 
- W -
W - Watt; west

w - week; width; with

WAIS - Wide Area Information Servers that let you retrieve content using natural language searches, indexed searching and very clever protocols.

WARC - World Administrative Radio Conference

WASP - (US) White Anglo-Saxon Protestant

wavetable synthesis - This is the successor to FM synthesis. Wavetable synthesis can store samples of instruments and is able to use them to generate quite realistic-sounding music.

wc - water closet

WCC - World Council of Churches

Wed - Wednesday

wef - With effect from

WHO - World Health Organisation

WI - West Indian; West Indies; Women's Institute

Win - Winter

Windows - Operating system sold by Microsoft, running on Intel chips.

Windows NT - Microsoft's answer to Unix, but designed by Microsoft alone.

Winsock - is a specification that network software providers use as a guideline for the standard application programming interface to their network software.

wk - week; work

WMO - World Meteorological Organization

WNW - west-northwest

WO - Warrant Officer

World-wide Navigational Warning Service (WWNWS) - A service established by the International Maritime Organization and International Hydrographic Organization for the purpose of co-ordinating the transmissions of radio navigational warnings in geographical areas.

Worm - Self-replicating piece of computer code that grows as it moves across a network.

wpb - waste paper basket

wpm - words per minute

WRAC - Women's Royal Army Corps

WRAF - Women's Royal Air Force

WRNS - Women's Royal Naval Service

WSW - west-southwest

WT - Radio Telegraphy

wt - weight

www - World Wide Web. A hypertext-based information retrieval system; the collection of Internet servers that use http protocols; the bit of the internet with pictures.

Wx - Weather
 
- X -
X - Roman 10; a kiss; an unknown number; thing, name, etc

Xmas - Christmas

XML - Extensible Markup Language
 
- Y -
Y - Yen (Japanese currency)

YHA - Youth Hostels Association

YMCA - Young Men's Christian Association

yr - year; your

YWCA - Young Women's Christian Association
 
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