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Oculus sinister. Latin: `evil eye' or `left eye' -- one of the two, anyway. My oculist must be an occultist. Cf. o.d. More information at TLC.

Old Saxon. Precursor of Old English.

Old Style. Refers to English dates under the Julian calendar. See explanation at CY (Calendar Year) entry.

Operating System. Visit the FAQ for the Usenet newsgroup comp.os.research.

IBM uses the term System Control Program (SCP).

Optical Scan. An OS ballot or test form has open outlines (ovals typically, rectangles or diamonds sometimes) for possible responses (votes or answers). A response is indicated by the filling-in of an outline, typically with a #2 pencil. Perhaps the use of pencil is a hold-over from when the marks on paper forms were detected by conductivity. I suspect ink is detected as well as graphite now, but who wants to find out the hard way (or worse: not find out) that it isn't? Okay, this year (2008) when I voted in the primary, I noticed that the booths where we filled out the OS ballots were only equipped with pens.

Modern OS ballot machines typically regurgitate ballots with overvotes so that voters can correct their forms. The machines I've used accept paper ballots that are printed on both sides, and can read ballots inserted in at least a couple of different orientations. The scanned votes are tabulated and reported, but the individual scanned ballots are also collected in an internal bin and afterwards transported to a central counting station for any possible recount. (I think the votes are generally tabulated in the limited sense of being separately summed. I don't recall any instance of the government doing crosstabs, except in the limited sense of preventing overvotes.)

Optical Spectroscopy.

Osmium chemical symbol. Osmium has an atomic number 76. That means it has 38 protons and... 38 more protons! (The atomic number is the total number of protons in the nucleus.) Osmium is one of the platinum-group metals.

Learn more about osmium at its entry in WebElements and its entry at Chemicool.

Out of Stock. Publishers' abbreviation.

Oxygen Saturation.

Obstructive Sleep Apnea. The most common type of sleep apnea, in which there is a loss of muscle tone in the tongue, throat and larynx during sleep, causing partial (hypopnea) or complete (apnea) blockage of the air passage. The diaphragm increases pressure progressively to compensate, and the sleeper repeatedly awakens or almost awakens. Cf. Central Sleep Apnea (CSA).

Optical Society of America. See their ``OpticsNet.''

A Japanese word for `king.' That little hat over the o isn't a crown, by the way. It's a way of indicating that the o is long. (``Long'' in the traditional sense of duration, ``vowel quantity.'') The word is actually a sort of compound, written with two kanji. The first kanji, is pronounced ô and can be used for `king.' The second kanji represents -sama, a formal version of san (equivalent to Mr., but not marking gender).

Ohio Section of the American Physical Society. What I have to say to them is: ``O you Silly Acronym PutzeS.''

Oriented-Strand Board. A wood construction building material.

Osbourne, Ozzy
As a public service, I'd like to point out that Ozzy Osbourne is looking increasingly like Yoko Ono. It's probably not contagious, unless living your private life very publicly is contagious.

(U.S.) Office of Special Council. ``[A]n independent federal investigative and prosecutorial agency. Our primary mission is to safeguard the merit system by protecting federal employees and applicants from prohibited personnel practices, especially reprisal for whistleblowing. OSC also serves as a safe and secure channel for federal workers who wish to disclose violations of laws, gross mismanagement or waste of funds, abuse of authority, and a specific danger to the public health and safety. In addition, OSC enforces and provides advisory opinions regarding the Hatch Act, and protects the rights of federal employee military veterans and reservists under the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act [USERRA] of 1994.''

Ontario Securities Commission. Performs functions similar to those of the US SEC.

Operations Support Center. In the wake of TMI, the NRC ordered that licensees of operating nuclear plants establish an OSC at each plant, ``separate from the control room and other emergency response facilities as a place where operations support personnel can assemble and report in an emergency situation to receive instructions from the operating staff. Communications [are required to] be provided between the OSC, TSC, EOF, and control room.''

Orbital Sciences Corporation. (Listed on the NYSE as ORB.)

Optical Sensor Collaborative Association.

Orbiting Satellite Carrying Amateur Radio.

Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe. The old CSCE.

Open System Direction.

Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services. ``[C]ommitted to improving results and outcomes for people with disabilities of all ages.'' How can they hope to achieve anything when they're stuck in the feckless Department of Education?

I assume in French this would be l'osers.

Open Software Foundation (``Oppose Sun Forever'').

Oxidation-induced Stacking Fault. (That's ``stacking'' at the microscopic level -- crystal planes all bent out of shape.)

Office of Supervisory Jurisdiction. NASD term for an office where supervisory activities take place (customer orders are reviewed and endorsed, advertising or sales literature for use by an NASD member's associated persons is approved, etc.)

Occupational Safety and Health Administration. (Or `... Act.')

O'SHAuGhnessy. A classroom building at Notre Dame University. Cf. Shaq.

Open Society Institute. A project of/Somehow related to/Funded by the Soros Foundation.

The term ``open society'' was popularized, or at least prominently used, by Karl Popper; the title of one of his best-known books was The Open Society and Its Enemies (in two volumes: ``The Spell of Plato'' and ``The High Tide of Prophecy: Hegel, Marx, and the Aftermath''). It was issued in various editions. George Soros fancies himself a philosopher and is a disciple of Karl Popper. Well, he's a follower, anyway, at least in the sense that he came afterwards. None of those who can think much think much of George Soros as a philosopher, but everyone recognizes that he has a lot of money. He has published a book with the title Open Society [Reforming Global Capitalism Reconsidered]. ``The concept of open society is based on the recognition that our understanding of the world is inherently imperfect....'' Well isn't that deep.

Open Systems Interconnection. See the elucidation from FOLDOC, or from whatis.com.

A seven-layer model defined by ISO as a reference for standardization of electronic communication systems. The seven layers are

  1. Physical Layer
    Defines the physical connections over which data are transmitted.
  2. Link Layer
    Mode of transmission of bits, the code, including error, parity bits.
  3. Network Layer
    The arrangement of the physical connection into a circuit.
  4. Transport Layer
    Control and error-handling.
  5. Session Layer
    Host-to-host message ritual.
  6. Presentation Layer
    The kinds of data objects that are commonly understood.
  7. Application Layer
    User application.

Origination Signaling IDentifier.

Optically Stimulated Luminescence. Some folks at Dalhousie University Division of Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology have an interesting application.

Optically addressed Spatial Light Modulator (SLM).

NASA Office of Safety and Mission Assurance.

Operating System with Multiple Virtual Storage.

OverSize/OverWeight permit.

On-line Service Provider.

Official SCRABBLE Players' Dictionary. In its domain, this dictionary has greater authority than any other dictionary. To find out what that domain is, geographically, see the SOWPODS entry.

The first edition of the OSPD was produced by the NSA in 1978 and listed all of the rules-acceptable 2- to 8-letter words found in five popular American collegiate (i.e., abridged) dictionaries. Allowed inflections of the base words were mostly listed in the entries for the base forms. (In my opinion, however, it is missing a great many of the -ly adverbs.) This list was published as a Scrabble dictionary by Merriam-Webster. M-W produced a second edition at some point, which included words that had been added to a later edition of Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary (the MWCD8 had been one of the five originally consulted); it seems that the other four were largely ignored in this revision.

The first two editions had both been valid in North American tournament play. The third edition added further new words, but was also, controversially, expurgated of some ``objectionable'' words. (Missing are at least three obvious four-letter words, and tournament-valid pejorative terms for members of various racial and ethnic groups.) The OSPD3 was not used for tournament play. Instead, a supplementary list of words was used with the OSPD2 (see OSPD2+). Eventually (1998), an Official Tournament and Club Word List (OTCWL or, for short, TWL, q.v.; also abbreviated OWL) was created by the NSA as the official arbiter for word rulings at North American clubs and tournaments. Following the publication of OSPD4 (still expurgated) in 2005, a second edition of the TWL was created (available at the beginning of 2006). M-W has been the publisher for both editions of the TWL.

All editions of the OSPD have maintained the restriction of listing base words no longer than eight letters. Although a rack only holds seven tiles, it is possible to construct words longer than eight letters by connecting different letters already on the board. To establish the validity of a longer word that is not an inflected form of an 8-letter-or-shorter base word, there is a designated official dictionary. For OSPD1, that was the MWCD8 and then the MWCD9. For subsequent editions of the OSPD, it has usually been whatever was the latest edition of the MWCD.

Official SCRABBLE Players' Dictionary 2nd edition PLUS. The OSPD second edition had been the official dictionary for North American tournaments, but the third edition was published with expurgations. In reaction, the National Scrabble Association created a (vide OSPD supra), An updated but expurgated version of the OSPD2, not valid for tournament play. This webpage lists words that were new in the OSPD3 (i.e., added since the OSPD2).

Official SCRABBLE Players' Dictionary (vide OSPD supra), 3rd edition. An updated but expurgated version of the OSPD2, not valid for tournament play. This webpage lists words that were new in the OSPD3 (i.e., added since the OSPD2).

Official SCRABBLE Players' Dictionary (vide OSPD supra), 4th edition, new in 2005. ``More than 100,000 playable two- to eight-letter words including 4,000 new entries.'' Sure, it's ``endorsed by the National SCRABBLE® Association,'' but the official list of words valid in NSA tournament play is the TWL. The NSA serves a list of two- and three-letter words that were new in the OSPD4.

Although this is the second expurgated edition, it still contains the words gyp and slave, which were originally ethnic slurs. (I've actually met some of the people who object to the time-honored master-slave terminology. I understand that some people view that as racially offensive; I view that view as insufficiently historically broad-minded, but I suppose context matters.) Of course, the Scotch brand name for adhesive tape originally arose from an ethnic stereotype. Oh look, the verb scotch is in the OSPD4, and the payment-arrangement adjective Dutch. (I think that's still capitalized; Scrabble tiles don't care.) That doesn't offend anyone? They should raise their consciousness! Get outraged, people! It's your right and responsibility to be maximally aggrieved! To say nothing of all the Indian tribes named after other Indian tribes' uncomplimentary epithets for them.

FWIW, growing up in Germany in the 20's and 30's, my mother learned the common expression ``das kommt mir spanisch vor,'' meaning roughly `it's Greek [i.e., incomprehensible] to me,'' but extending to actions and situations rather than just language. This Wikipedia entry lists comparable phrases in many other languages, yet a page for the expression is apparently only available in six languages: English, German, Hebrew, Hungarian, and Korean (all added some time before mid-2011), and Chinese (added some time between mid-2011 and early 2013).

These pages contain lists of similar expressions in various languages, with what we will call home and difficult languages. By home language I mean the language in which the expression is uttered or written, and by difficult language the one that serves as metonym for incomprehensibility, the ``Greek'' language. Of the five languages that parallel the Greek-to-me wikipedia page in English, only Korean seems to lack its own version of the phrase. (That is, only Korean does not serve as a home language for a version of this expression. Doubtless, other languages may lack such an expression, but I wouldn't count its absence on another language's webpage as strong evidence for the possibility.)

I think it's cute that Esperanto uses good old Volapük as the difficult (proverbially incomprehensible) tongue. Volapük was an earlier artificial language, based very loosely on English vocabulary, that was very successful for a few years among the people who like that sort of stuff, until it was swept away by Esperanto itself. The Volapük community (of many thousands of speakers and number of publications) shattered as a dozen or so improved (i.e., more Esperanto-like) versions were invented in reaction to that tidal wave. I'm amazed and impressed that Danish also memorializes that dead artificial language in such an expression.

Greek, Spanish, and Chinese all enjoy widespread status as ``difficult languages'' for these expressions. English is only listed as difficult for one home language (Cantonese), but having the language described as `chicken intestines' goes a long way to make up for this. The only inconsistency I noticed among the pages (apart from limited language coverage) is that the (all very similar) English, German, and Hungarian pages list only Chinese as the difficult language for French, but the Hebrew page lists Hebrew and Javanese as alternate difficult languages. They seem to be right about l'hébreu: when I checked in 2009, one characteristic phrase got 188k ghits for Hebrew, as against 555k for Chinese; Javanese only got 6.3k, though. Related information can be found at the gringo and b. entries.

Once, in the crowded dining room of a Jerusalem hotel, I ate breakfast with an Italian tourist who told me she didn't speak Hebrew or English. Astonished, I asked her how she communicated. She knew French. Sometimes my foolishness amazes me, but mostly I don't notice it.

The other day, I was over at Gary and Susan's, and I started to tell a story about something stupid and insignificant that I did in graduate school. Then I stopped myself and said that it's a low-yield story, not very interesting. But Gary coaxed it out of me. In that spirit, I'm going to just blather on now. I won't be offended if you browse to another page. I may not even notice.

About ten miles south of Florence along E35, there's a village called I Cappuccini with a bed-and-board conference center where I stayed for a week in 1987. A proceedings volume eventually came out of that. We conferees ate all our meals in a common room, at round tables seating six to eight, served by a crew of, iirc, three waiters. One of them was an older fellow, and one day this old waiter started talking to one of my table mates. She happened, like most of the conferees, to not understand Italian, so I started translating to her.

[Let me interrupt myself here to point out that this whole conference-center-with-room-and-board-on-premises deal seems, in my limited experience, to be more common in continental Europe than in the US or the UK. I suppose that's partly because conferees can generally only be counted on to have some facility in the conference language, and the conference language for international meetings is very frequently English. (I count the following as corroborative of the hypothesis: I've also encountered the room-and-board thing in northern England. Also in -- Manchester, actually -- I've had one-way conversations in which the only way I could tell that the [apparently native English] cabbie had understood me was by arriving at the correct destination.) But Quebec and Japan seem to follow the US/(southern) UK plan, and in Japan you can't always count on finding a passable English-speaker, so I don't know.]

Anyway, the old fellow noticed that I was translating and addressed me directly, so I put down my silverware and spoke to him directly in Italian. It turned out that he wanted to know if she was Chinese (which, not to get into definitional details, she is). Once he got this little drib of information, he said triumphantly, ``Ho indovinato!'' (`I guessed it!') and trotted off. We were all like, that was it? Das kam uns spanisch vor.

Open Shortest Path First. The name of and strategy implemented by an Interior Gateway Protocol (IGP).

Operating System-directed configuration and Power Management.

On-Site Program Review Instruments.

Office of Scientific Research. One of the OXR's. Short for (US) Air Force OSR (AFOSR), but you really don't need to know that, because they're out of money. When you call to beg for money, they can feel your pain because they're feeling it too. (That's what they tell me, anyway, but maybe they're just trying to tell me something.) Budget cuts are really just a way of fostering human understanding that cuts across organizational lines.

OSRAM diadem
Car lights that look clear when they're off but amber when on. Available from P.G. Performance.

Online Services Reference Manual.

Occupant Safety Research Project.

Office of Strategic Services. WWII organization that became the CIA.

Operations Support System[s]. A decision-making component of Telecommunications Management Network (TMN).

Office of Space Science and Applications.

Oregon State System of Higher Education.

(White House) Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP).

Ohio State Trappers Association.

ostensive definition
A definition based on the enumeration of representative examples.

Medical and anatomical Latin for an opening or passage. This usage extends the classical Latin senses of the word (`door, opening of a river'), so the word qualifies as New Latin even though the word is old. The seaport (now mostly ruins, except for the stadium) that served ancient Rome is called Ostia.

Implicitly, the term ostium seems to be used exclusively for natural or normal openings. Accidental openings may be perforations or stomata, and artificial ostia are now called ostomies. For openings in plants, the Greek stoma seems to be preferred. For a bit more on the -stom- terms, see ostomy.

If you hear a Spaniard exclaim ``¡Ostia!'' what he's probably saying is ``¡hostia!'' Hostia (from the identically spelled word in Latin), means `sacrifice offering.' (The aitch is silent in Spanish.) In Roman Catholic ritual, hostia is also the name of a round wafer of unleavened bread, which serves the same purpose. Please don't ask me what I mean by ``the same.'' Somehow, hostia has also taken on the slang sense of a blow (as with a fist), and ¡hostia! has become an expression of surprise or frustration. I've heard Spaniards use this interjection, but never any Latin Americans.

Someone who has had an ostomy. In contrast to an astomate -- someone or something not having a mouth. Not to be confused with an estimate (of your auto repair bill), which might also leave you speechless.

A new word whose prevalence, if not exactly popularity, has grown with the frequency of the procedure. First attested in the 1950's, it meant stoma in the sense of an artificial opening like a colostomy, ileostomy, etc. -- words from which the word was abstracted in a back-formation. The situation is similar to that of ologies -- a jocular term alluding to various mostly academic disciplines (like thinkology or sociology). In both cases, the initial o is a little lexical mortar that was left behind when the Greek brick of stoma (`mouth') or logos (`word, reason') was broken off for reuse, although the formation of ostomy was probably influenced by ostium, q.v. There don't seem to be any particular ostomies that don't have an o before the stomy. (No, vastomy is not an exception.) (Contrast the common words genealogy, mammalogy, and mineralogy. See also nealogy.)

The existence of two words for what was a surgical sense of the word stoma allowed a divergence into two sharper senses: an ostomy now refers to the surgically created opening, while the stoma is the end of the ureter or small or large intestine that can be seen protruding through the abdominal wall. Okay, that's enough of that. We don't want to drive away our readers. If you want to know more, try the UOA.

Stoma, of course, is Greek for `mouth.' Another technical use of the word is in botany: stomata (plural of stoma) is the name given to pores on the surface of a leaf that are the main avenue for exchange of gas with the surrounding air. The rate of gas flow through stomata is regulated by guard cells that adjust the size of the opening. In addition to admitting oxygen for respiration and CO2 for photosynthesis, stomata also allow water vapor to escape. Higher CO2 levels allow the guard cells to close up and so decrease water loss, enabling the plant to survive in more arid environments.

In Latin the sense of stoma slid down a bit -- from opening of the gullet to the gullet itself, hence our word stomach and cognates in all the major Romance languages. For an instance of a semantic shift in the opposite direction, see the boca entry.

(White House) Office of Science and Technology Policy (US Government). Founded in 1976. There used to be a legislative-branch counterpart -- Congressional Office of Science and Technology (OTA) -- it's been abolished.

Ostwald-Lussac Rule of Stages
In crystallization, the least stable phase forms first, then transforms. There's probably more to it than that, but the important thing is to begin. Now that there's an entry for this, I'll probably ask for clarification the next time an appropriate person shows up at Stammtisch, and the entry will probably improve. In the meantime, you've been delayed in your net search for real information...

Ostwald process
A process for the generation of nitric acid from ammonia. The key step is the first, in which platinum or platinum-rhodium alloy (in the form of a gauze mesh to maximize surface exposure to the gases) catalyzes the reaction of pressurized ammonia and oxygen (800-900°C) to produce nitrogen monoxide:
               4NH  + 5O       -->    4NO + 6H O .
                  3     2   (Pt, Rh)          2
The subsequent steps can be conducted in a single vessel. They are an addition reaction to produce nitrogen dioxide,
               2NO + O   -->  2NO  ,
                      2          2
and further oxidation and dissolution in water:
               4NO  + O  + 2H O  -->  4HNO  .
                  2    2     2            3

Ostwald's Rule
The same thing as the Ostwald-Lussac Rule of Stages. It seems that Ostwald's rule is particularly applicable to the process of condensation from the vapor. Thus, phosphorus vapor condenses first to yellow phosphorus instead of the more stable red-phosphorous allotrope.

{ Ohio | Oklahoma (Stillwater) | Oregon } State University.

One Station (fighting) Unit Training.

On-Site User { Training | Test }.


Official SCRABBLE® Words. Used in Britain; see SOWPODS.

Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response.

Official SCRABBLE® Words, International. Used in Britain; see SOWPODS.

OS/2, OS2
IBM's multitasking operating system rival to Microsoft's Windows NT. OS/2 had a much smaller, much more corporate user base than Windows, and since at least 2000, IBM has been phasing it out, as usual providing a soft landing and available-for-a-price legacy support. All of the web pages about OS2 that I used to link to are 404 now. A search of IBM webspace still yields plenty of articles for the antiquarian.

[I think:] Optimized Server (for the AS/400 computers). Originally for host-centric computing, later versions are a code substrate for server software.

Occupational Therap{ ist | y }. The rehab people use the term to refer to the recovery of manual dexterity, regardless whether the skill would be used in work or not.

Internet resource list at O.T. Online. UB's OT Dept. has a homepage here. There's also something there called Rehabilitation Rehabilitation Science.


Oedipus Tyrannus. An ancient Greek tragedy. Spelling usually given in this Latinized form. Title sometimes approximately translated to Latin Oedipus Rex (Oedipus the King). Last of three plays that constitute Sophocles's Theban Cycle.

[Football icon]

Offensive Tackle. Football position, role, or action.

Off-Topic. Characterizes postings and threads conducted in a (usually electronic) discussion group that are outside the established subjects of the forum. Could be misunderstood as On-Topic, in principle, but the point is rarely to clarify but only to emphasize, so this misunderstanding is unlikely. Or so I would have thought. Others know better, and realizing that the abbreviation is ambiguous, clarify it by writing ``OT Topic[s].'' Cf. TAN:, AFLAC.

OT, O.T.
Old Testament. Hebrew Bible. Mostly in Hebrew, a few parts in Aramaic; Maccabees was preserved only in Greek (LXX), IIRC.

OverTime. Time worked or played in excess of regular hours. If this occurs in or to break a tie, the persons involved are professionals or amateurs, and will in either case not be paid for O/T.

Office of Technology Assessment. Created in 1972 to advise the US Congress, sort of like CBO. It doesn't maintain its own web site because it went out of existence in 1995 (here's how). There's a memorial site from Princeton. Looking on the bright side, what's the use of solid technical information that legislators are going to ignore? Vide IATAFI, executive-branch OSTP, British legislative POST and German legislative TAB.

Operational Transconductance Amplifier.

Oxford Text Archive. A repository of electronic text for use in humanities research, founded in 1976. It currently contains about 2500 (literary, linguistic, and reference) texts in 26 languages (but mostly English), variously encoded (but moving toward SGML).

Organización de Tratado del Atlantico Norte. Spanish for `North Atlantic Treaty Organization' (NATO). Also French: Organisation du Traité de l'Atlantique Nord.

otan jobi omedato [gozaimasu]
Japanese: `happy birthday [sir/ma'am].'

Off-Track-Betting. Betting on races (usually horses) that takes place away from the racetrack premises. Usually involves an electronic communication technology. Haven't seen an EE course listing for it, though.


Over-The-Counter. Refers to stocks traded outside of a stock exchange. This does not necessarily, or even usually, mean ``directly''; the stock usually goes through a stockbroker. In principle, a holder of commercial stock who knows a potential purchaser can always make a sale directly. ``OTC stocks'' are those not listed on a major exchange. Timely information on broker-handled OTC trades is available from OTCBB.

All of the above information is a guess. You get the information you pay for.

Non-prescription drugs are also referred to as ``over-the-counter,'' which suggests that prescription drugs, by contrast, are sold under the counter. As for the acronym OTC itself, I've only seen it used in this sense in FDA documents.

Ozone Transport Commission. ``... comprised of government leaders and environmental officials from 12 Northeast and mid-Atlantic states, the District of Columbia, and the United States Environmental Protection Agency [EPA].''

Over-The-Counter Bulletin Board. ``[A] regulated quotation service that displays real-time quotes, last-sale prices, and volume information in over-the-counter (OTC) equity securities. An OTC equity security generally is any equity that is not listed or traded on NASDAQ or a national [US] securities exchange. OTCBB securities include national, regional, and foreign equity issues, warrants, units, ADRs, and Direct Participation Programs (DPPs).''

Official Tournament and Club Word List. I've also see ``OTaCWL'' used by a member of the NSA dictionary committee. Usually called TWL (which see) or OWL.

On-Time Delivery. A part of Just-In-Time (JIT) production.

Optical Time-Domain Reflectomet{er|ry} (TDR).

Operational Test and Evaluation Plan.

Optical Transfer Function.

Over-The-Horizon (Backscatter) Radar. Radar using long-wavelength beams bounced off the ionosphere. Intended for military early-warning systems.

We are here on earth to do good to others.
What the others are here for, I don't know.

-- W. H. Auden

``OTIS is an acronym for Operative Term Is Stimulate and has changed its name to SITO because of a trademark dispute with [a litigious art school].'' The web site SITO is an art resource on the web.

Optimal Trajectories by Implicit Simulation. A general-purpose program that is used to perform trajectory performance studies.

Output-TransformerLess. That is, without an output transformer.

Out To Lunch.

Office of Transportation Materials (of the DOE).

Other Than Mexican. A handy acronym in discussions of US border control and illegal aliens. Mexicans who cross the southern land border of the US illegally and are caught tend to be repatriated more quickly.

OrthoTOlidine. An organic test reagent that turns yellow-green in the presence of a halogen.

OTOH, otoh
On The Other Hand.

President Truman used to wish for a ``one-handed economist.''

To judge from some discussions, every second person is an avatar. Where are the elephant heads?

One-Time Programmable. Characterizes EPROM or EPLD without the erase window. This can be put in a plastic plackage, rather than the more expensive ceramic-with-window package. (In principle, the term might refer to fuse-based programmable chips, but as used it does not.)

Ortho TerPhenyl. Ortho refers to position on a benzene ring, abbreviated o: ``o-terphenyl.''

One-Time Programmable ROM. EPROM without the erase window. (In principle this might, but in usage it does not, refer to Bipolar PROM, which is usually programmed by selectively blowing fuses.)

Ontario Teachers Pension Board.

Over The Road. Surface transport. Truckin'.

Oxygen Transmission Rate. Used in packaging industry to characterize the properties of films for sealing/storing/transporting perishable products.

Ozone Transport Region.

One True Shatner. Of course you knew that, you were just checking that the SBF glossary had it right. Oh you of little faith!

Österreichische Turner-Syndrom Initiative.

Office of Transportation Technologies (of the DOE).

Over The Top.

Office of Travel and Tourism Industries. An office within the International Trade Administration of the US Department of Commerce.

Looks a bit like Ötzi the iceman.

Off The Top Of My Head.

If the Canadians had chosen this name for their national capital, would it be more or less frequently misspelled or misspelt than Ottawa?

Yow! Make a parallel universe and test the hypothesis.

Orbital Transfer Vehicle. NASA acronym.

Ancient Greek: `no, not.' Pronounced ``ooh.'' Just so you know there's at least one Indo-European language in Europe whose ``no'' doesn't begin in en. It's pretty typical of Greek to be the outlier, probably for reasons having to do with the early migration and spread of IE-speaking peoples. There are three closely related forms: ouk, ouch, and ouchi. Note that ``ch'' here, as is usual in Greek transliteration, represents the letter chi, pronounced as an aspirated version of kappa. Ouk and ouch are the forms used when the word is followed immediately by a word beginning with a vowel. If the vowel has rough breathing (represented by a diacritical mark in Greek and an initial aitch in Latin and English) then ouch is used. Otherwise (smooth breathing, no initial aitch) ouk.

Ouchi (pronounced approximately ``oo-kih'') is just no. I didn't say okay -- I said no. FWIW, ``okey'' is a common Spanish spelling of okay (an American English loan, of course). This reminds me of the Portuguese expression pois não, which has its own entry não.

Hoo, mi?

Orthodox Union. That is, the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America, founded in 1898. Their server is up on Saturday. This is ``modern Orthodox,'' so some people who want to keep so-called ``glatt'' kosher disdain the little U-in-a-circle symbol.

University of Oklahoma, at Norman. For my convenience, there's a link to the OU Press at the OU Press entry For an incomplete list of ``universities of'' with the U transposed in the abbreviation, see this U entry.

A form of the word for no or not in Ancient Greek. See ou. If you actually wanted to say ouch in Ancient Greek, you'd exclaim papai! This is probably the appropriate place to mention that the Stoic movement in philosophy traces its origins to two followers of the Ancient Greek screwball Parmenides -- Zeno and Democritus (the latter is the Romanized form of Demokritos). The word stoic is derived from stoa, loosely translated as `porch' (more at stoep). I hope you are thoroughly confused and entertained.

Organised Unitary Content Hypothesis. Unified model for various patterns of impaired semantic memory, proposed in 1990 by Alfonso Caramazza, Brenda Rapp, Argye E. Hillis, and Romani.

I don't want to put in any spoilers here, so just go to the ou, oo-kay?

ought to

Operating Under the Influence. Look, surgeons are paying malpractice insurance out the wazoo -- is it really necessary to criminalize a little nerve-steadying self-medication? I guess the answer is `yes.'

{ Organization-Unique | Organizational Unit } Identifier.

`Yesyes,' in FrenchGerman (oui and ja, resp.). According to an expert interviewed on May 12, 2007 (i.e., that Saturday morning), on C2C, Ouija boards don't work so good during rainy weather. You tend to get a meaner sort of spirit. I never knew. She pointed out about these spirits that ``half the time, you don't even know who you're talking to.'' I must admit, I never had this pointed out to me in such stark quantitative terms. ``You have to ask yourself, `Why are they hanging around?'  [As opposed to going to some other, better place that they might or might not be eligible for, I think she meant.]'' Some time later in the show, callers-in complained that their Ouija board spelled out stuff that ``didn't look like any known language.'' I imagine that they were expecting English. You probably have to be an accomplished linguist to use these things.

It sounds like Alley-Oopianese, but it's really Ancient Greek. See ou, see me.

IATA code for airport in Oulu, Finland.

Oxford University Library Services.

Oxford University Library Services (OULS) Payment Card. This glossary is the place to find out what acronyms like this mean, because the editors of Outline, the house organ of the Oxford University libraries, try to avoid expanding their common acronyms but once every four or five issues.

Optical Unidirectional Line-Switched Ring network.

A measure of copper foil thickness. One-ounce foil is 0.0014 in thick. I.e., one-ounce foil has a density of one av. ounce per square foot.

Oxford University Press has WWW sites in the UK and in the US.

Many of the better out-of-print OUP books reappear in quality, low-cost editions from Sandpiper books. Also, apparently a division of the same company is PostScript, a warehouse of ``[p]ublishers' overstocks, reprints and remaindered editions from major publishing houses and independent and university presses'' sold by mail order.

OU Press
University of Oklahoma Press. The university press of the University of Oklahoma at Norman (OU).

Portuguese for `gold.' From the Latin aurum (source of the chemical symbol Au) and cognate with the French or. There's also a cognate in Spanish and Italian, but you don't want to go there.

outcry witness
A witness who encounters the complainant shortly after the time that a sexual assault is alleged to have occurred.

outer-ear infection
Children get inner-ear infections (frequently, in many cases). They grow out of that in time. Adults are more likely to get outer-ear infections. If you're into pain but want to avoid any unsightly physical trauma, this is the ticket, the primo stuff! I can't recommend it highly enough! More than an ear ache, this will radiate over your face to all the places where evolution has thoughtfully (okay: adaptively) provided a high density of nerve endings. There's interesting variety too: from discomfort, stuffiness, and dull pain to throbbing and sudden piercing jabs that stagger you. Don't worry about the treatment. Ear drops for topical antibiotic and a little ineffective cortisone -- you'll continue to have swell pain for a week (after having waited a pain-filled week or two expecting it to go away on its own).

Go swimming today in a warm public pool with insufficient chlorine.

Some of you pain amateurs are probably scoffing -- ah, what's a little ol' ear ache? Exactly! The problem with most other painful ailments is that one way or another they elicit sympathy. Other people have had it, or it's well-known to be bad, or it's unknown but sounds or looks terrible. And sympathy is soothing, which is counterproductive of really intense suffering. For the pain aficionado, the special attraction of ear ache is that it sounds minor, so you seem like a whiner to complain about it at all and you get hurtful contempt instead of sympathy. (Whine to someone who's had a heart operation, if you're not getting enough contempt.) It's great!

Bonus misery: you have to eat mushy foods or have pain with every bite.

It is a charming feature of baseball (or an irritating one, if that's how you feel) that it is played on a field whose dimensions are only partly specified by the rules of the game. (And I'm not even talking about the strike zone.) The cricket outfield is likewise of variable dimensions.

Okay, I've said enough about that. My real motivation for this entry is to point out that while the Japanese adopted the word out when they adopted the game (it gets transliterated back as auto), they coined gaiya for outfield. That's a two-kanji word, and the first kanji (with sound gai and corresponding to `out') is the same one that occurs in gaijin (`foreigner'). Gaikan means `surface, exterior.' (Gaiken means `outline.' No cigar, though: it's a different kanji.)

out of your element
But we have something similar (though heavier) just below it on the periodic table.

output impedance
| VOUT / IOUT | and/or | dVOUT / dIOUT |. Output impedance on an amplifier or gate is generally intended to be low. The reason is that the output signal is generally encoded as a voltage, and one wants current draw by any following input stage to have the smallest possible effect on that voltage level. Methods to diminish output impedance include emitter followers and Darlington pairs. Cf. input impedance.

outreach specialist

out years
Years further into the future.

Organización Vecinal. (Plural: Organizaciones Vecinales. Spanish, `neighborhood organization[s].'

Original Video Animation.

Organic VCSEL.

Outside Vapor-Deposition Process.

Hello, boys and girls! Today we're going to learn an important fact about ovens! When the oven in the kitchen is ``on,'' the door of the oven is warm. Sometimes very warm, sometimes not so warm. Meanwhile, the inside of the oven is hot! Very hot! Here is the important fact: when we say that ``the door of the oven is warm,'' we mean that the outside of the oven door is warm. The inside of the oven door is very, very hot, just like the other parts of the inside of the oven. When daddy forgets this and brushes the inside of the door with his elbow, he may scream some unusual words. We should forget those words.

Overcoming Writing Blocks
It's the title of an old paperback I have. It's got a clever cover: yellow lined paper as a background, with a fountain pen twisted into a pretzel. Do you know what a fountain pen is? It's a pen that shows your age. No, it doesn't have a digital display, and it's not short for ``Fountain of Youth'' pen. The one on this cover shows that it's an old book. I've had it for a long time. I've been planning to get around to reading it, also for a long time. Not that I plan to take a long time to--

Oh alright: it's by Karin Mack, Ph.D. and Eric Skjei, Ph.D., ©1979. It wasn't published by an academic press, so there's a chance it's readable. Personally, I don't really have writing blocks to overcome. At any given moment, I usually have at most one writing block to overcome. Unfortunately, that one block is the one that prevents me from writing the project I'm trying to work on. While I'm blocked on that, though, I can ``work on'' any other writing project, so long as I don't make any actual progress.

It's interesting that they call these monsters ``writing blocks'' instead of ``writer's blocks'' or ``writers' blocks,'' but it does avoid the problem of where to put the apostrophe, if you insist on discussing these monsters in the plural. Before we get into that, however, I ought to mention that demonstrate, monitor and monster all have a common Latin root. Frankly, I thought I already had. You know, I really don't feel like doing all that etymological research again, now, so what say I leave the demonstrate/monitor/monster discussion for later. There, I feel much better already. Actually, it's explained at the epenthesis entry. What the heck, let's peek inside and see if they explain why they use the plural and the present perfect. Hmm. They don't say, immediately. I notice that this is another one of those books that I don't and likely won't feel like summarizing into an entry. So from your point of view, my reading this book (if that comes to pass) is a waste of time. To say nothing of this entry.

overnight success
In show-biz, some people say it takes years to become an overnight success. Those people are called optimists.

Overseas Contingency Operation
War. A particular one (but not just any particular one) that has not attained to a permanent name.

The Washington Post reported on March 25, 2009, that a memo recommending this term had been emailed during the previous week to Pentagon staff members. The Defense Department's Office of Security Review noted that ``this administration prefers to avoid using the term 'Long War' or 'Global War on Terror' [GWOT.] Please use 'Overseas Contingency Operation.' ''

The memo said the direction came from the Office of Management and Budget, the executive-branch agency that reviews the public testimony of administration officials before it is delivered. (No, I don't understand that.) Not so, said Kenneth Baer, an OMB spokesman. ``There was no memo, no guidance... This is the opinion of a career civil servant.''

Coincidentally or not, senior administration officials had been publicly using the phrase ``overseas contingency operations'' in a war context for roughly a month before the email was sent.

Ontario Volunteer Emergency Response Team.

An overtone is a harmonic with frequency above the fundamental. Because both harmonics and overtones are labeled by ordinal numbers, the correspondence between harmonic and overtone names can confuse. Pay close attention:

The first harmonic is the fundamental frequency itself. The first harmonic has a frequency that is an integer multiple of the fundamental frequency, but it happens that the multiplication factor is unity.

The second harmonic has twice the frequency of the fundamental. This is the first overtone.

The third harmonic (thrice the fundamental frequency) is the second overtone.

In general, the nth harmonic has n times the frequency of the fundamental and is also called the (n-1)th (or ``n minus first'') overtone.

When people talk about the harmonics of a tone, they are often implicitly excluding the fundamental. In other words, they mean the overtones (also ``the overtone series''). The usual way this sort of distinction is made in mathematics is with the qualifier ``proper.'' For exaple, a proper subset of a set is a subset other than the whole set itself or the empty set.

Yes, of course there's a zeroth harmonic. The term is used to refer to the constant term in a Fourier expansion.

Despite the use of ordinal naming (``second harmonic'' instead of ``double harmonic,'' etc.), when push comes to shove harmonics are really thought of as general multiples of a fundamental frequency. Hence ``half harmonic'' for a signal with twice the period of the fundamental. The ordinal naming is thus unfortunate, because in English most fractions share a name with an ordinal (compare ``one third'' and ``the third''). The same is often true in the ordinary sloppy usage of languages like Spanish that maintain a distinction (``un tercio'' vs. ``el tercero'' corresponding respectively to the last English example).

Overtone and harmonic are words that tend to be used to refer to individual tones in relation to another often implicit tone (the fundamental). Another set of terms exists in music to describe pairs of tones (whether sounded simultaneously or sequentially). The same words are used to refer to the separation (``interval'') of these pairs. (I know -- a distinction only a lexicographer might care about.) Obviously, since one tone may be expressed as the harmonic of another, the terminology of individual harmonics/overtones has a natural relation to this interval description. However, because instrument tuning usually involves a compromise among incompatible goals for frequency ratios of different pitches, the precise sense of most of these terms is an involved matter to discuss. The two unambiguous basic terms are the unison (two sounds at the same pitch) and the octave (one sound at twice the pitch of the other).

overweaning pride
You can hardly get any more Freudian than that.

Open Verilog International.


Probably another town in upstate New York, just NW of Ithaca, where Ulysses made his home. There's a public discussion forum on Ovid accessible from Sean Redmond's Homepage. He also serves a page of Recent Ovidian Bibliography.

OVerLay. Overlay in olde-tyme computing days referred to the patching together of code when a program or its data was too large to keep entirely in the CPU's RAM (usually core). The idea was that the program would be separated into relatively independent pieces that could be loaded sequentially, with data discarded when possible or stored elsewhere if necessary (typically in sequential-access files). The program ran as an overlay of the separated pieces. By the 1970's this process had become essentially transparent to the user, done automatically by the compile-and-load sequence. On some minicomputers, it was still necessary to do it by hand. In 1979, for example, I had to hand-overlay a Fortran program that had previously run on a mainframe, in order to get it to run on a Data General Nova.

In current use, overlay normally refers to partial or complete overlap of 2D graphical information. See, for example Brad Hansen's definition.

{ Ohio | Oklahoma | Oregon } Veterinary Medical Association. See also AVMA.

Ontario Veterinary Medical Association. See also this CVMA and CVO

Objeto Volador No Identificado. Spanish for `Unidentified Flying Object' (UFO).

Office of the Vice President. Albert Gore, US Vice President from 1993 to 2001, was regarded by himself as an expert in technological issues. Dick Cheney, US Vice President from 2001 to 2009, was regarded by everyone as an oil-industry executive. (It was thus just a short step, for those so inclined, to eventually regard him as Satan.)

German, Österreichische Volkspartei. `Austrian People's Party.'

Over-Voltage Protection. Transient suppression.

Oregon Veterinary Technician and Assistant Association. Formed in June 2005. ``Our mission is to promote the profession of veterinary medical support staff and foster recognition and understanding of the roles of Veterinary Technicians and Assistants in the State of Oregon.''

Old Westminster. A former pupil of Westminster School (The Royal College of St. Peter at Westminster, in London). The plural form is OWW.

One Way (ticket).

Oxford World's Classics. An OUP imprint established in 1901. ``Making available popular favourites as well as lesser-known books, the series has grown to 700 titles - from the 4,000 year-old myths of Mesopotamia to the twentieth-century's greatest novels.''

Original Water Depth Mine.

Office of War Information. A US WWII organization. Pierre Lazareff directed OWI's program of broadcasts to France. Claude Lévi-Strauss spent the war years in New York, and he worked for OWI to pick up some extra money. He and some other exiles would show up two or three times a week to read news and propaganda texts issued by Lazareff's office. He was usually chosen to do Roosevelt's speeches because it seemed that his voice could be heard best over the jamming.

Operating (a motor vehicle) While Intoxicated. (Intoxication by the Holy Spirit, Love, etc. don't count. We're talkin' chemicals ingested or injected here.)

That's the Indiana State acronym. Other states use DWI, DUI, etc. I think some state should use OUI.

Online Writing Lab. The English Department at Purdue University offers one. It seems they're not alone, but... teaching engineers to write! What a wonderful idea! Why didn't anyone think of this before?

Official Tournament and Club Word List. A list defined by the NSA (no, not that NSA), and better known as TWL (q.v.). The second edition, promulgated in 2006, is called OWL2 or, more commonly, TWL06.

The second edition of OWL.

Office of War Mobilization. Created in Spring 1943 to coordinate the activities of various US institutions created during WWII to distribute manpower and strategic materials (let's not call it ``central planning,'' okay?). Those other institutions included the NWLB, WMC, and WPB. The OWM was headed by former senator and Supreme Court justice James F. Byrnes.

owned by the people
Operated by bureaucrats accountable to no one. In the case of news organizations, it means the lunatics are running the asylum.

Optical-disc WORM.

Ohio Weslyan University. In Delaware, Ohio. That's the town of Delaware, not the state, in the state of Ohio.

Established in 1842, like three other institutions mentioned here.

Old WestminsterS. Plural of OW, q.v. The TLA is used both for all former students of Westminster School collectively, and for plural but proper (oh, very proper!) subsets thereof. Former pupils of Westminster School (The Royal College of St. Peter at Westminster) in London.

That hurt!

Castrated adult male bovine. Plural form: oxen. Until VAX (or should that be ``until and since''?), ox was the only common Modern English word using the -en plural (-an in Old English, regular nominative plural ending for weak-declension nouns).

ox, Ox
Popular semiconductor industry morpheme for silicon dioxide. Vide thinox, thickox. Forms uncountable (`mass') noun: no plural form. The materials are frequently used in electronic isolation. The morpheme is not used in isolation; use ``oxide.''

Hug (``O'') and kiss (``X''). Plural form: OOXX.

Ottawa eXchange or something else.

Outlook eXpress. Not a common abbreviation for Outlook Express (see OE or OLE) among native English speakers, despite the fact that oxen are also stupid.

Overnight eXpress. A truck freight company.

oxalic acid
A complexing agent for Zr and Mo. There's more to know, but I don't know it.

A term used to refer collectively to England's OXford and CamBRIDGE universities. It was reported on December 5, 2008, that one Sally Adams, in her fifties, was appealing for an egg donor to help her to have a child. She was reported as having asked that only women who are Oxford or Cambridge graduates come forward. As India Knight wrote in the Sunday Times (Dec. 7), ``the donor must have gone to Oxbridge. The egg must be bright. The egg must know its quads.'' Ms. Adams, described in some articles as an academic, explained that ``Oxford is a very good catchment area. Many of my roots are there, I own a house in North Oxford of which I am the landlady, and I studied at Oxford University. Oxford and Cambridge are the seats of people [sic] who are both academic and intellectual and often very altruistic. An egg donor needs to be under 32 years old and I am looking for someone who is educated, intellectual and possibly has a connection with the colleges.''

Adams has already found a sperm donor (they're always easier to find, aren't they?) from London, but has not yet acquired an ``appropriate'' egg donor. She said she would fund the IVF treatment using the rental income from that house she owns. In the UK it is illegal to pay egg or sperm donors, but Adams has said she would pay for all medical expenses. (The NHS will only provide for a limited number of IVF attempts, and Adams long ago exhausted that number.)

News outlets that felt like putting a negative spin on the story had no difficulty finding people with Oxbridge pedigrees (pardon the expression) to wring their hands and bloviate on the ethical dangers of amateur eugenics. Some commentators, like India Knight, found the choosy ``egg-shopping'' creepy. So Adams should just take pot luck? (Knight's reaction just goes to show how far we've come. Gamete-shopping is as old as sexual selection; yet IVF is now less controversial.) Mark (don't bother looking; he's not identified in or anywhere near this entry) thinks that it's at least kind of weird: ``If she wants someone else's sperm and someone else's egg, why bother with pregnancy?'' Who knows? Maybe Adams already has a surrogate uterus lined up. Personally, given her associations, I just think it's very open-minded of Adams to consider Cambridge donors. I guess she wants to avoid inbreeding.

Coming eventually: an entry for the Repository for Germinal Choice (a/k/a the Nobel Prize Sperm Bank). FWIW, that bank, which operated from 1979 to 1999, did not supply sperm to single women or lesbians. (This was at the insistence of founder Robert Graham's wife.)

Oxford unit
A measure of the quantity of penicillin, assayed in terms of its antibacterial activity. One Oxford unit is the
amount of penicillin which, when dissolved in 50 cubic centimeters of meat extract broth, just completely inhibits the growth of the test strain of Staphylococcus aureus.

That's the apparently standard definition, quoted by Donald G. Anderson, M.D., in his article ``Penicillin'' in The American Journal of Nursing, vol. 45, no. 1, pp. 18-20 (Jan. 1945); see ftnt. 1 on p. 18. By late 1945 it was possible to grow pure crystals of penicillin, and it was found that one milligram of penicillin corresponded to about 1,650 Oxford units (see this page, browsed 2007.07.12).

Informal generic term for the research funding agencies US military (AFOSR, ARO, ONR; ARPA/DARPA, DOD).

Occidental College.

Vital for life of most organisms you can think of, apart from anerobic bacteria, which lack just a couple of necessary enzymes. Some anaerobic bacteria die on exposure to air. But then, so do fish. If the air you breathe has an oxygen partial pressure substantially less than 1/5 atmosphere, you will lose consciousness. Then it will be very difficult to do whatever it was you had planned to do with that gas-handling equipment, but that will no longer be your biggest problem. Oxygen gas is molecular oxygen -- O2.

A word or more usually a term that is self-contradictory. From the Greek oxy- (sharp) + môrón (dull).



A (Gk.) word with an acute accent on the ultima. Some extend this definition to include barytone (grave accent on ultima).

Cf. paroxytone and proparoxytone, and -- what the hey, while you're at it -- perispomenon and even properispomenon. Ancient Greek doesn't have an exclamation mark, and I think you can see why.

Optimum Yield.

Option Year.



Japanese: `boss, superior.' Cf. kobun.

Japanese term for a foreigner (especially a foreign teacher), employed by the (Japanese national) government.


Ornstein-Zernike (equation). An exact relation satisfied by the pair correlation function and the direct correlation function in (as normally formulated) a homogeneous fluid.

Observe that by using the numerical correspondence associated with alphabetical order (collating sequence), we have the gematria:

O - Z = 15 - 26 = -11
P - Y = 16 - 25 = -9

Well, something to think about, anyway, I guess. Close, but not equal.

oz., Oz.
Ounce. The troy and apothecary ounce are equal to each other and to one twelfth of the corresponding pound. A fluid ounce is one sixteenth of a pint and an avoirdupois ounce is one sixteenth of the corresponding pound. A pint of water weighs about one av. pound.

ozone cracking
Elastomer CRACKING caused by OZONE (O3). Concentrations of a few parts per hundred million in air are enough to produce noticeable effects. Ozone attacks double bonds on the surface of bulk elastomer (rubber).

Troy Ounce.

Chemical formula for molecular oxygen, the stable form of oxygen at anything like normal conditions. Atomic oxygen, O, is a free radical. Sounds revolutionary, doesn't it? In chemistry, as in many scientific fields, radical has its etymological meaning of `root.' The idea is, a radical is not a chemical species normally found free, but in combination. A free radical like O is highly unstable and therefore occurs only in small concentrations. When two oxygen radicals collide, they have a high cross section for combining.

The symbol of an anti-Nazi resistance movement in WWII Austria. The symbol is a roundabout way of representing Ö (o-Umlaut): the letter o represents itself, and 5 represents the fifth letter of the Roman alphabet; together they represent oe, which is the way one represents Ö typographically when the appropriate single symbol cannot be produced. The Ö, of course, is the initial of Österreich, the name of Austria in the language of Austria (namely German). I suppose the 5 also can be taken to represent the letter ess that follows. The word Österreich means `eastern realm.'

Austria was Adolf Hitler's birthplace. He came to power in Germany in the early 1930's, and in the last free elections there before the war, his Nazi party won about a third of the vote. My mother recalls from that time how, as a child, she was told by my grandfather that he was about to cast his last vote in Germany. His expectation was correct. In 1938, Hitler scored his greatest electoral triumph when Austrians overwhelmingly approved a referendum on Anschuß -- amalgamation into the German Reich. Austrians were among Hitler's most enthusiastic supporters during the Nazi era. As WWII ended, Austria was occupied by both democratic and Soviet Allied troops, and Vienna was temporarily partitioned like Berlin. It was decided among the Allies that Austria would be treated as a liberated country rather than as a part of conquered Germany. At the time, this didn't fool anyone who didn't want to be fooled, but in the long run, the memory of the elderly is no match for official history, ignorance, and consoling myths.

The Anschluß made the very name of the country a protest against Nazism, hence the force of ``o5.'' The symbol appeared during the war as a graffito on walls around Vienna, and such graffiti were allowed to remain afterwards. Maybe a few more were added for good measure. At least one guidebook mentioned that the symbol was carved near the main entrance of a cathedral in Vienna. However, when an SBF investigator visited in 2002, he was unable to find it.

The Austrian filmmaker Frederick Baker made a five-minute documentary entitled ``Austria o5 2000'' (16mm, color, 2001) which shows various graffiti around from around Vienna. It received an honorable mention at the 40th Ann Arbor Film Festival (in 2002).

The following is not directly related to o5, but it continues, unfortunately, the story limned a couple of paragraphs back. In October 1999, Austria's far-right Freedom Party dramatically increased its share of the vote in general elections and became the second-largest party (Social Democrats 33.3%, Freedom 27.2%, People's Party 26.9%). The Freedom Party had been moving toward the center until 1986, when Jörg Haider became party leader. Haider had a long history of nice things to say about Nazism and Nazis, coupled with less-prominent and not especially convincing denunciations of Nazism. The entire performance looked to be qualified and calibrated to skirt effective opposition to fascism while tapping certain unsatisfied sentiments of the electorate. These included a genuine nostalgia (among some) for authoritarianism (or what they understood or liked or thought was the essence of it), resentment of the politically correct suppression of profascist expression, measured or not, and resentment of the related ``Shoach business,'' as it is called in Germany (exploitation of dominant antifascism for gain, political or otherwise).

In 1991, Haider was forced to resign the governorship of Carinthia, Austria's southernmost province, after praising Hitler's orderly employment policies. Later he gave a speech before a meeting of Waffen SS veterans and praised their contribution to building a modern Austria. One might regard these as tactical rhetorical errors, or as laying a strategic groundwork. People who harbor half-century-old resentments might be expected to remember a balm of words administered a decade previous. In any case, over the following decade Haider's speeches were a little more careful and mentions of Hitler suppressed. He did a Le Pen, basically, focussing on immigration and patriotic issues, and criticizing corrupt practices of the coalition of Social Democratic and People's parties, which had ruled nationally since 1986 (also).

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