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Tardive Dyskinesia. Tardive Dystonia.

Teacher Development. Look, why don't you just give me the money that you would have spent on that? I can put it to better use.

Technology-Dominated. See MD for explanation of one use of the term.

Thermal Desorption. Perkin-Elmer will sell you a device to do it (ATD = Automatic TD).

Threading Dislocation[s].

Time-Dependent. As in TDSE (Schrödinger Equation), TDHF (Hartree-Fock), and TDDB (Dielectric Breakdown). (DB).

Toronto-Dominion (Bank). A perusal of web pages suggests that the legal name under which the bank continues to be incorporated (as a Canadian-chartered commercial bank) is ``Toronto-Dominion Bank,'' but that its various subsidiaries have official names that use only the sealed acronym ``TD,'' and not ``Toronto-Dominion.'' Among the TD institution names is the somewhat twisted linguistic construct ``TD Banknorth,'' which provides a full range of retail and commercial banking products and services for customers not in Norway or the Northwest Territories, but in New England and the mid-Atlantic states of the US. The bank is referred to as the ``TD Bank'' and also as TD Bank Financial Group, which only sounds like a holding company for the TD Bank.

Bill Hatanaka, ``Group Head Wealth Management, and Chairman & Chief Executive Officer TD Waterhouse'' at least as of May 2006, played four years of professional football with the old Ottawa Rough Riders and the Hamilton Tiger-Cats of the CFL, and was a member of the 1976 Ottawa team that won the Grey Cup Championship.

Joe Moglia, the CEO of TD Ameritrade. Before going into the financial services industry, he capped a 16-year coaching career as the defensive coordinator for Dartmouth College's football team. They say that this capped his coaching career, but in 2005 he published Coach Yourself to Success: Winning the Investment Game ``in which he explains the essential principles of investing.''

I think TD has really fumbled in not sponsoring any football team.

[Football icon]

TouchDown. Six points. I haven't a lot to say about touchdowns, and so far this season (two games in fall 2007), the Notre Dame offense doesn't either. Why don't you read the entry for Touchdown Jesus?

Drop-kick me Jesus through the goal-posts of life!

Oh wait, I think that's Australian football.

Training & Development. Monthly publication of the American Society for same (ASTD). As a general rule, learning journals are not learned. At least this one doesn't make a pretence.

Travaux dirigés. Literally `directed work'; may be translated `supervised work.' A specialized term used in education, but I'm not sure what part of ``assignments'' it might exclude. (Note that the French expression is plural; the abbreviation is treated that way too.)

Trastorno de Déficit de Atención. Spanish for `Attention Deficit Disorder' (ADD). Just as English-speakers have been hyperactive in the invention of alternative and related acronyms, so in Spanish one has

Terrestrial Digital Audio Broadcasting.

Tetrakis (DiethylAmino) Ethylene.

Trastorno de Déficit de Atención con Hiperactividad. More at the TDA entry.

Tracking and Data Acquisition Satellite. NASA acronym.

Tracking and Data Acquisition Satellite System. NASA acronym.

TD Bank Financial Group. This is a corporate brand under which the TD Bank does business. The expansion of ``TD Bank'' can be found at this TD entry, but the TD in TDBFG is apparently a sealed acronym.

Technical Development Capital. The high-tech investment arm of the UK's FFI. As part of a general rebranding in 1983, it became 3i Ventures Division, or informally 3i Ventures.

Texas Department of Corrections. They make some money for the state by taking in other states' prisoners in their excess capacity. Like most states' systems, however, they save the state money mostly by serving bad food and paying their guards poorly.

TDC, tdc, t.d.c.
Top Dead Center. The moment or position of a reciprocating engine piston when the piston is furthest into its cylinder (i.e., when the gas volume is smallest). This serves as the standard reference position for describing the phase of an individual cycle of a reciprocating engine. Phases are described by angles before or after top dead center -- bTDC or aTDC.

Back in the day, you'd mark an exposed rotating part (a fan-belt sheave mounted on the crankshaft, say) with chalk and adjust ignition timing with a strobe light that was in sync with the spark. Nowadays, with electronic ignition systems, the internal microprocessor adjusts timing, and when the timing is off you replace the computer. My 1990 Honda didn't even have a timing chain either: it had a toothed belt. And, of course, instead of a fan belt you've got an electric-powered fan that's activated according to engine temperature. The older engines were more mechanical and more interesting.

Transportation Data Coordinating Committee.

Time-Division Duplexing.

Telephonic Device for the Deaf.

Time-Dependent (TD) Dielectric Breakdown (DB).

Time-Dependent (TD) Density Functional Theory.

Tetrakis (DiEthylAmino) Titanium: Ti(N(C2H5)2)4. A precursor for TiN CVD.

Two-Dimensional Electron Gas. Rare. Submit your paper with ``2DEG'' and just check that the copyeditors don't bounce it.

Télévision de France. The French broadcasting authority.

Tour de France. A grueling bike race. Over a month racers compete over a course that tours France, ending in Paris. Each biker is timed for each segment. The biker with the shortest total time wins.

Cf. Latour-de-France, Le Tour de France, and Lance Armstrong.

The 1998 race came to be known as the ``Tour de Farce,'' after the Festina team car was found packed with drugs and needles.

TenoFovir. I don't know what name the initialism is based on (though I'm pretty sure it's not this next TDF). TDF is an NRTI used in the treatment of AIDS.

Testis Determining Factor.

Time-Dependent (TD) Hartree-Fock (HF). Used for atomic scattering.

Telecommunications for the Deaf, Inc.

Time-Delay[ed] Integration.

This Day In Ancient History. Another resource from the indefatigable coffee-powered David Meadows.

Transfer Delay Jitter. This could almost describe stage-fright, but it's an ATM term.

Technology Development Laboratory. NASA acronym.

Time-Dependent (TD) Local Density Approximation (LDA). Introduced by W. Ekardt [Phys. Rev. Lett. 52, 1925 (1984); Phys. Rev. B 31 (1931)] for calculations in jellium. Calculations usually performed in the frequency domain.

Technology Development Mission[s]. NASA acronym.

Therapeutic Drug Monitoring. This is an interesting case: the drug is therapeutic, and the monitoring may be too.

Time-Division Multiplexing. Same as TDMA.

Time-Division Multiple Access. Same as TDM.

Tetrakis (DiMethylAmino) Titanium: Ti(N(CH3)2)4. A precursor for TiN CVD.

Technology Development Mission[s] (TDM) Polar. NASA acronym.

Thermal-Desorption Mass Spectroscopy.

The Detroit News.

Time Difference Of Arrival. One method to determine direction of origin for a signal picked up by an extended antenna.

Technology Development Program. NASA acronym.

Time-Domain Reflectometry. (Occasionally Time-Division Reflectometry.) Time-of-flight measurement of pulse reflection gives distance-to-fault (DTF) information for cables, etc. Cf. FDR.

Time-Domain Response.

Test Data collection and Reduction System.

Tracking Data Relay Satellite. NASA acronym.

Tracking Data Relay Satellite System. NASA acronym.

Time-Dependent (TD) Schrödinger Equation.

Transmitter Data Service Request.

Time-Domain Transmittance. Cf. TDR.

Triply Distilled Water.

Taxonomic Databases Working Group.

The Data Warehousing Institute.

Terminal Doppler Weather Radar. A ground-based radar system for detecting and identifying microbursts and other weather (gust fronts, precip) near airports. First US installations in 1992. (Microbursts are small but intense downdrafts below thunderstorms. A kind of windshear.)

Chemical symbol for tellurium, named after the earth. This element was discovered on earth. Telluride is a mining town in Colorado. They used to mine the earth, now they mine the tourists. The tourists go there to ski, giving rise to the variant ``T'hell u ride.''

Although the English word exploit and the Spanish word explotar are cognates that appear to have experienced similar semantic drift in recent years, their meanings do not quite coincide. Explotar does not refer to just any kind of profitable utilization. The kinds of mining done at Telluride qualify. For more on explotar, see the miga entry.

That was fun, let's do it again!

Tellurium. Atomic number 52. The heaviest chalcogen, unless you want to count elements with no stable isotopes. Now there are two such elements: polonium (Po), in the same group but nominally metallic (the pure stuff is a p-type semiconductor) and the element provisionally known as ununhexium (barf).

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

Termina{ l | ting } Equipment.

T & E
Testing and Evaluation.

Thermionic Emission. The ``Edison Effect.''

ThermoElectric (effect). The ``Peltier Effect.''

[Football icon]

Tight End. An offensive position in American football. An offensive term in American slang.

Transferred Electron.

Transverse Electric. (Typically refers to nature of waveguide-confined microwave mode.) Cf. TEM, TM.

Technical Exchange Agreement. How do you compute tax on these things?

Tennessee Education Association.

Testing, Evaluation, and Assessment.

Torque Equilibrium Attitude. NASA acronym.

Total Exposure Assessment.

Back when I used to work at Fermilab and other places where the wearing of radiation-monitoring badges was standard, I always heard stories about the guy who left his lab coat in the beam tunnel overnight, and how, after tag monitors were developed at the end of the month, an ambulance was sent to pick him up at home. Good story, anyway.

Totally Egregious Acronym.

TriEthyl Aluminum -- metalorganic source for Aluminum in MOCVD.

Take a guess. Come on, guess. Here's a hint: ``TEA CO2 lasers.'' Give up?

Teacher Education Accreditation Council.

Teach the children!
They're the only ones who might be naïve enough to believe you!

tea-cup fingers
A Bob Fosse trademark: dancer's thumb and forefinger holding the brim of his or her derby, other fingers spread splayed out inelegantly. This was used in ``Bye-Bye Blackbird,'' a number from Liza With a Z (1972). In 1973, Fosse won an Emmy for Liza With a Z, an Oscar for Cabaret and a Tony for Pippin.

Fosse was balding and self-conscious about it, and derby hats were about as common on his dancers' heads as on Bolivian Indians'. He thought his hands were ugly, and white gloves were a frequent part of his and his dancers' costumes. He was slightly pigeon-toed, and sure enow, an exaggerated knees-together stance is part of Fosse's gestural vocabulary. Fosse also liked to use a splayed fingers. What personal deformity explained that?

See also the drip.

Bis(2,2,2-TrichloroEthyl)AzoDicarboxylate. A DEAD derivative.

team effort, This was a
Credit will be allocated without regard to merit.

The Consortium for the Teaching of the Middle Ages, Inc. If you figure out exactly how the letter assignments go, good for you. Oh -- ``TEAching of the Middle ageS'' -- of course! It's natural. But maybe ``Texts, tEchniques, And on-line resources for teachers of Medieval Studies.''

Tests of Engineering Aptitude, Mathematics and Science. It's competition, but it's more fun than competition for grades. It's sponsored by JETS.

Someone who drives a team of draft animals; hence a trucker. Until we come up with something to say about, oh, Jimmy Hoffa for instance, you'll just have to go and read the coach entry.

The WORKing together of an entire TEAM of selfless individuals, focused on the goal of getting the ball to the star scorer.

Thermal model for electromigration. For crying out loud -- this acronym is so contrived that no one who remembers the original expansion is willing to reveal it! I don't even know whether the acronym is supposed to be pronounced like ``tears'' or like ``tears.'' A related acronym is SWEAT (q.v.).

Traffic Engineering for Automated Route Selection.

Tears of a Komsomol Girl
One of the favorite home-made cocktails of Soviet-era author Venedikt Yerofeyev, described in his samizdat classic ``Moscow Stations'' as consisting of mouthwash, nail polish, lemon soda, lavender toilet water, verbena, and herbal lotion. I suppose that if you didn't want to get drunk, it doubled as an excellent all-purpose personal hygiene product. The Komsomol girl is crying because she knows that the wreckers and saboteurs and counter-revolutionaries are laughing, nefariously happy that all this great patriotic production of health manufactures -- exceeding five-year-plan quotas! -- is going to waste. Cf. Spirit of Geneva.

Venedikt died young. Too bad he could not take advantage of SARG.

Notice that the first Tears ingredient listed is mouthwash. According to a news item reported by CourtTV.com, mouthwash was the reason a woman in Michigan was charged with DUI after an automobile accident on January 9, 2005. She rear-ended a car at an intersection, and an officer at the scene observed that she appeared intoxicated. According to the officer, she failed a breathalyzer test but denied consuming any alcoholic drinks. She did say, however, that she had drunk three large glasses of Listerine. Spit it out! You're not supposed to swallow it! The arresting officer also found an open Listerine bottle in the car. According to the news item, Listerine brand mouthwash ``contains between 21.6 percent and 26.9 percent alcohol.'' (Is that by volume or weight? At room temperature, 22 wt.% is equivalent to 27 vol.% alcohol in water.)

The problem of widespread alcoholism did not end with the collapse of the Soviet Union. In a study published in The Lancet on June 15, 2007, it was estimated that the drinking of alcohol not meant for internal consumption (``surrogate alcohols'' like cologne and antiseptics) may account for nearly half of all deaths among working-age men in Russia. This simply extrapolates the 43% rate found in a thorough study of death among working-age men in Izhevsk, a city in the Urals. Dr. David Leon, of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, led a study that examined all deaths of men aged 25-54 in that city from 2003 to 2005. They also interviewed the men's closest relatives for information on the men's drinking and smoking habits, socio-economic class, etc. The study showed that the consumption of surrogate alcohol was the strongest predictor of mortality. Men who consumed it had an approximately six-fold greater mortality rate than men who didn't.

¿Te atreves a través otra vez?
I just thought that was a cute pun. Richer than that hackneyed como como ... , though it's not indefinitely extensible. It means something like `do you dare [to go] through again?'

Transportation Equity Act for the 21st century (enacted June 1998).

TEA-21 is the principal US transportation law at the federal level, superseding the similar ISTEA (1991). A notable feature of ISTEA continued in TEA-21 is the use of MPO's to provide local official input to funding decisions.

Thermal Elongation Coefficient.

ThermoElectric Coolers. Typically, these work by means of the Peltier effect.

Transistor Electrical Characterization and Analysis Program.

tech neck
A malady invented to drum up business for masseurs and masseuses. Neck pain caused by excessive or awkward laptop use. Cf. Blackberry thumb.

technical documentation
The technical documentation entry of this glossary was written by Alfred M. Kriman.

What, you wanted to know About technical documentation, as such?

technical misnomenclature
This entry isn't about every conceivable kind of technical misnomenclature. It's not about contronyms like inflammable or badly chosen acronyms like LCC. It's not even about casual boilerplate lies like ``for your convenience,'' let alone vacuities like ``Basically'' or ``leverage the world-class synergies.'' (The last pair of quotation marks just delimit a construct coined for illustrative purposes -- it's not a direct quote yet, afaik.)

What we mean by ``technical misnomenclature'' is technical terminology whose construction betrays what turned out to be a misunderstanding of the thing termed. So ``technical mis(by-reason-of-initial-error)nomenclature'' might be regarded as a better and more precise term. However, considerations of awkwardness or unwieldiness must be taken into account when one is not writing German. Without further ado, here's the complete and unabridged list of technical misnomenclature that I can think of offhand:

  1. abscisic acid

    This is a chemical that regulates growth in plants. It is primarily involved in seed maturation (promoting storage-protein synthesis and preventing premature germination) and in leaves' water budgets (causing the closure of stomata). It was named for its supposed role in abscission (separation of a leaf, fruit, or other part from the body of a plant). It is no longer believed to play a role in that process.
  2. leopard

    A contraction of words for lion and panther (from the Greek léôn and párdos). The leopard was thought to be a hybrid of the two; presumably the spotted appearance was supposed to arise from the different colors of the lion and panther. You wonder why it didn't occur to the Romans or Greeks whether this inhomogeneous mixture of hide colors did not occur in other crosses. [The giraffe was once known as a cameleopard. At least in this case the (double) compound did not reflect speculative genealogy but merely a descriptive reference -- the general shape of a camel and the spots of a leopard.]
  3. malaria

    This disease name is an Italian compound meaning `bad air.' It was originally applied to the air of marshy districts of Italy. That air was thought responsible for various febrile diseases (including those to which the term is now restricted, which are known to be caused by protozoans of the genus Plasmodium). Perhaps the term isn't too far off, if you admit the mosquitoes that air holds to be one of its properties.
  4. oxygen

    Lavoisier introduced the word oxygine in 1778 to designate the element we call, not so coincidentally, oxygen. Recognizing that there was such an element represented a major advance, since the dominant theory of what we call oxidation had been based on a complementary substance called phlogiston. (Phlogiston was a hypothetical component in what we now regard as unoxidized substances. For example, the calcination of metals, in which metals are heated and combine with atmospheric oxygen to form metal oxides, was regarded in the phlogiston theory as the heat-induced release of phlogiston from the metal. As Lavoisier was not the first to point out, the increase in weight of the solid is somewhat telling against this theory.)

    Lavoisier made a great advance by reinterpreting Priestley's isolation of ``dephlogisticated air,'' though he discovered less than he thought he had. He believed that the newly isolated element was the essential ingredient in all acids. Hence the name, from oxy (`sharp,' as in oxymoron, from `sharp' + `dull') and -gen. The term introduced in 1778 was principe oxygine, which Lavoisier used interchangeably with principe acidifiant, `acidifying principle.' The first term was nudged toward the more etymologically faithful principe oxygène by 1786, and the noun use of oxygène is attested by 1787.

    Oxygen is indeed an element in most of the compounds regarded as acids in Lavoisier's time, but there were exceptions. The main exceptions were the hydrogen halide solutions -- hydrochloric acid [HCl(aq)] and such. This acid was known as muriatic acid, and Lavoisier supposed that the muriatic ion was itself a compound of oxygen with some other as-yet-undiscovered element. (Chlorine gas had in fact already been isolated by Scheele, whose name for it corresponds to `dephlogisticated marine acid' in English. The corresponding term in Lavoisier's nomenclature corresponded to oxygenated muriatic acid.) Davy isolated chlorine by his own methods in 1810 and recognized it as an element, giving it the name chlorine. Nevertheless, Lavoisier's idea that the muriate radical was a compound was influential for a long time.

technical problem
Generally speaking, a technical problem is one that requires specialized competence -- technical knowledge -- to understand adequately. (If the vagueness of ``adequately'' bothers you, you can understand it to mean ``at least well enough to solve.'') In many cases, however, the term ``technical problem'' is used to suggest an aspect of the problem that is either implied or probable. For example, it may imply that the speaker will not attempt to explain the problem. Often, to call something a technical problem is to imply that it is only a slight inconvenience or possibly not a problem at all. This interesting sense of the term will be the main focus of this entry when it is in a more finished state. Also, there will be a small treat for Bandy fans.

A little lesson, please pay attention: data processing and display equipment are part of technology, but not all technology is necessarily an application of computers.

Thus, when the university web-page has a link labeled simply ``Technology,'' rather than something a little more specific, like ``Information Technology'' or ``the limited information-technology resources provided by the university for student use but wholly inadequate for research,'' that is arrogation and buffoonery. Similarly, when I receive instructions for requesting classroom space for next semester, and the instructions contain the statement ``[n]ot all classrooms have technology in them,'' that is a flatfooted error, about as bad as the misspellings in announcements for the too aptly named self-improvement courses. Thank you. Please save this information somewhere, preferably in your brain.

It seems others have noticed the problem. The preface of Edward Tenner's Our Own Devices (Knopf, 2003) begins ``Technology appears to have become a synonym for electronic systems. It should not be so. Just because microprocessors are all machines does not mean that all machines, even all important machines, are built around chips and circuits.'' [The book is subtitled ``The Past and Future of Body Technology.'' It's about clothing, shoes, helmets, ergonomic chairs, and the like.]

TECHnology for WAter REsources.

TECHnical WRiter mailing List.

Text Editor and COrrector. Of sainted memory.

Spread for drying. You can find a nice sunny flat surface for this on the Scrabble tablelands. It conjugates as a regular verb, but tad and tod are playable too.

Trailing-Edge Detector.

Transient Enhanced Diffusion. Name applied to enhanced dopant diffusion caused by point defects generated by ion implantation. Enhancement factors of 20 000 X occur.

Transmission Electron Diffract{ ion | ometry }. It's what you'd imagine. I've also seen ``Transmission Electron Detection.''

Trade Electronic Data Interchange Systems.

Trans-Europ Express. Old name for international trains in Europe, using a dedicated fleet of cars. Replaced by EuroCity (EC) trains using cars from the national railways involved. Cf. TEN.

ThermoElectric Effect Spectroscopy.

tee shirt
There used to be at least one search engine specifically devoted to tee shirts (teefinder.com), but it now (October 2007) is simply an alternate URL for <t-shirts.com>, which has a rather meagre selection. There's also a newsgroup.

In October 2007, it was reported that a 28-year-old Virginia man had broken the US record for most tee shirts word at one time: 183, in sizes from S to 10XL. The world record remained at 224. The report said he ``donned them.'' I want to know how many he was able to put on by himself before he needed help, and if he took them off with a box cutter.

You might still remember the incident on a Southwest Airlines flight from Columbus, Ohio, to Tampa, Florida, which took place on Sunday, September 30, 2007. A man sitting in the last aisle was told by a cabin attendant that he had to change his tee shirt. It was a novelty item that described the wearer as ``Master Baiter.'' He bought it in the Virgin Islands. The airline later apologized. (The man was from Largo, Florida, where five days later a man used his clothes to steal a puppy.)

Technical Engineering and Electrical Union. From the homepage, in 2008:

The TEEU is the largest engineering union in Ireland & the second largest in manufacturing representing up to 45,000 workers. The TEEU represent a broad range of workers throughout industry and public service. The TEEU in its membership includes:
  • Craftworkers
  • Technicians
  • Specialists
  • Skilled operatives
  • General workers
  • Technical, administration, supervisory & managerial staff

Totally Enclosed, Fan-Cooled (motor). Cf. TENV.

Teaching English as a Foreign Language. That is, teaching English to people for whom it is a foreign language. Not teaching it as if it were a foreign language to the teacher, even though often it is. Synonym: TESL.

Teaching English as a Foreign Language to Adults. It sounds like the Greek plural of TEFLON (the products in both cases are normally artificial). Either that or the brand name for a new psoriasis drug. Too bad TESLA is such a rare term.

TEFLON, teflon
Originally Poly-(TEtraFLuOrethyleNe) (PTFE, q.v.). Also called plain ol' TFE, although that is perhaps best reserved for the monomer. Term eventually applied to other fluorinated hydrocarbon polymers with similar properties.

Pat Schroeder, then a witty US congresswoman (D-CO) is known for coining the phrase that led to the epithet of ``the teflon president'' for Ronald Reagan. Here is its genesis, as reported by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution on April 6, 1988.

She was frying eggs on the morning of August 2, 1983, and as she slid the eggs out of the frying pan,

she reflected on the way political accountability, in her view, slid off of President Reagan.

``I said, `He's just like this pan','' she recalled last week. ``Nothing sticks.''

Members of Congress may start the day's session with one-minute speeches, and this is how Rep. Schroeder started hers that day: ``Mr. Speaker, after carefully watching Ronald Reagan, he is attempting a great breakthrough in political technology--he has been perfecting the Teflon-coated presidency.''

So in origin the phrase did not slip smoothly but dangled, yet the teflon epithet did stick. (Actually, a fundamental difficulty with teflon coating is that it is intrinsically difficult to get teflon to stick. In that connection, see the razor's edge entry.)

You remember how Monsieur Jourdain felt, when he discovered he'd been speaking prose all his life and hadn't even known it? (If not, read the 40 entry and come back.) Well, now you can have a freebie like that too. It turns out that you've always known that teflon is an abhesive, and you never even knew that you knew it!

TriEthyl Gallium A common metalorganic source for gallium in MOMBE and MOCVD.

TriEthyl GAllium. I just discovered that in 1994, when I had a friend over as seminar speaker, the abstract he submitted used this abbreviation instead of TEG.

In the announcement, I included the following apt ``quote'':

Quasi Caesar: Gallium est omne partitum, inter radicis tres.
              (The Chemical Beam Wars, Book I)

Two-dimensional Electron Gas FET. Now-obsolete name for HEMT, once popular among some French author-researchers.

Typo for the.

Terminal Endpoint Identifier.

Text-Encoding Initiative.

There was some discussion of this (and some more, but poster John Price-Wilkin is now elsewhere) on the CAAL mailing list.

Here's an old posting on TEI.

Trans-Earth Injection. Firing of spacecraft engines to put vehicle into a trajectory bound for Earth. So far, that's been a return to earth from the Moon. I don't know if any stage in the travel of robot particle collectors or their return capsules has been tagged as a TEI. Cf. LOI, TMI.


Visit their extensive and informative, but mostly sales-focused, web site.

Tax and Expenditure Limit.

A Hebrew word (written tav-lamed, with the tseyrey vowel -- the one that looks like a colon fallen over on its side). In modern Hebrew, the word has three meanings: (1) a mound, heap, or hill, (2) a ruin or ruin heap, and (3) a curl or lock of hair. The third meaning does not occur in Biblical Hebrew. I suppose it is based on the second sense, used as a metaphor of remembrance. In fact, the meaning of tel in Biblical Hebrew is narrower, referring to a ruin-heap as in the English (loan from Arabic) tell. That restricted sense also seems to be the sense of the Assyrian cognate tilu.

The Modern Hebrew words t'lulit (`hillock'), talul, (`hilly'), and the word talil, `lofty' that appears in the Targumim (as you can imagine, here I'm cribbing here from Brown-Driver-Briggs) suggest that the original root was tav-lamed-lamed. Arabic and Syriac cognates are biconsonantal, although an apparent Old Aramaic cognate is triconsonantal (tav-lamed-yod). The evidence suggests that the Proto-Semitic root was triconsonantal, but that the two final ells converged, or assimilated if you can call it that, in a case where the vowel between them was a shwa. (This is what it suggests to me. In the compressed style of Brown-Driver-Briggs, perhaps it was considered too obvious for comment.) The question is where and when, and possibly how, that change took place.

It's been suggested that the two-consonant word was borrowed from Assyrian. Assyrian is an East Semitic language that was heavily influenced by Sumerian (a non-Semitic language). The loss of aleph, ayin, and back fricatives (excellent consonants to lose, if you ask my throat), and their replacement by vowels, severely compromised the integrity of the triconsonantal structure of the language. Assyrian was written using Sumerian script, though among the scribes there some knowledge of the alphabetic script used by the Phoenicians, and apparently some awareness of the originally triconsonantal basis of Assyrian. But if tel was borrowed from the Assyrian tilu, it was presumably borrowed from Assyrian speech.

Telescopium. Official IAU abbreviation for the constellation.

TetraEthyl Lead.

Spanish for `fabric, textile.' From the Latin tela meaning `web, woven fabric.' (In Spanish, Tela araña is `spider web.') The Latin word tela is used in medicine for various thin, web-like layers or membranes.

The Electronically Linked Academy. The WWW site of Scholars Press, which was shut down abruptly at the end of 1999.

T. E. Lawrence
Thomas Edward Lawrence (1888-1935).

TELecom COmpany. At some prehistoric time, I imagine telco might have abbreviated ``telephone company.''

French for `download.'

Long-distance surgery. The surgeon views the operation on closed-circuit high-definition TV, and performs the operation by manipulating one or more robotic arms. Well, that's what it ought to mean, but that's usually called remote surgery or telesurgery. Instead, the word telecision is used to describe the long-distance effects caused by a sharp spear. No?!? What then? A typo? Just a typo for television? What a disappointment.


Fax machine.

A message sent by a simple pulse-code modulation (PCM) scheme, like Morse code, over wires.

I was born the day before my grandfather's birthday; my father sent a telegram: ``HAPPY BIRTHDAY GRANDPA I WAS BORN YESTERDAY STOP''

One should be alert for those rare opportunities that allow one to realize a figure of speech.

There's a stretch of road near the Princeton University campus that is closed for a day or so each year. The story (I have not confirmed) goes that this action is legally required to demonstrate continued interest in and ownership of the road by the university. If it's true, maybe they could just delegate someone to drive slowly in a wide vehicle, answering everyone with ``Yes, as a matter of fact I do own the road!''

It's been quite a few years since I was born. Does anybody really still use telegrams? ``Marge'' has also gone somewhat out of fashion (which is probably why Homer Simpson's radical-beehive-coiffed wife is named Marge). In any case, any Margaret can always call herself by the etymologically mysterious ``Peggy.'' In the circumstance, there's no point in holding back for a more opportune moment to release the following palindromes:

Marge, let's send a madness telegram!

Marge lets Norah see Sharon's telegram.

Telenovela is a Spanish and Portuguese word for `soap opera.' The word has been borrowed in English to refer to Spanish and Portuguese soap operas, and to other soap operas in the same style.

Telenovelas are rarely open-ended, as American soap operas typically are. The earliest telenovelas aired once or twice a week and ran for a year or less. Today they typically last 120 or 150 episodes, airing 5 or 6 times a week for half a year. This difference is probably the main reason for not treating `soap opera' or `prime-time soap opera' as the English translation of telenovela, and for instead simply borrowing the Spanish term. I've also seen the loan translation ``ópera de jabón'' used in Spanish.

For someone like me, who has watched a total of perhaps 3 or 4 hours of telenovelas on Univision and Telemundo in his entire life, the duration of a series is not noticeable or usually even knowable. If you want a broad survey representing, for all I know, millions of hours of viewing, see the Wikipedia entry. Following are just the salient features from my own perspective.

Most of the actresses and many of the actors are, as in American soap operas, very attractive. The hair tends to be more luxuriant. I was surprised to see waist-length, smooth, bottle-blond hair, on a man, in a historical (Colonial-era) show, but I think he was supposed to be an Anglo. Some of the characters (particularly the less gorgeous older men, I guess) are conveniently rich and powerful. Big surprise there, too. Personal servants of various sorts -- chauffeurs, valets, etc. -- figure in the stories as they do not, I think, in US soaps.

A frequently-used sound effect is the thunderclap. When I first noticed it in El Diablo de los Guapos, I thought it was a distant gunshot or explosion. It's used as punctuation when someone receives shocking news or a revelation. If they're not careful with the timing, some actress is bound to seem as if her jaw fell open because she was shot in the back. As in American soaps, the background noise is either feeble or unnaturally absent. It's particularly noticeable, of course, during the breaks between atmospheric music and scripted speech.

A feature I was pleased to see much in absence was the common daytime-soap practice of people speaking to the backs of others in the foreground, so both can face the camera. Maybe this reflects the fact that showing someone your back is a greater social provocation among Latins. Then again, it might be a diachronic thing. Screens are getting wider; I haven't seen an English-language daytime soap in a while, and maybe the trend is now to spread actors' heads further apart (sounds surgical, no?) so they can speak while facing forward or almost forward beside each other.

Cleverly or perhaps just sensibly, on at least some telenovelas, the episodes (Spanish translation: los episodios) are called capítulos, `chapters.' A major subgenre of telenovelas is set in the colonial era. These shows are striking because they are like and unlike US westerns. On one hand, horseback and coaches are the main forms of transportation apart from feet. Along with the clothing and scenery, they immediately remind one of westerns, the main US genre featuring horses. On the other hand, westerns are set in the US West during a relatively brief period of rapid expansion and proverbial lawlessness. The Mexican genre represents a more settled civilization. One immediately wonders why so few movies, never mind TV programs, are set in the American East during the long era before the introduction of the automobile.

Superior to email because it saves on disk space.

[Phone icon]

Also known menacingly as ``the instrument.'' Early telephones were not direct-dial. (Cf. DDD.) Here's a family of horn-nosed wooden robot heads with metallic eyes.

This evening an attractive young woman asked if she could have my home phone number. With flat affect, I just said ``no.'' She doesn't usually get no for an answer, but she saw the humor in the situation and her smile broadened. I was paying with cash anyway, but I'm sure she realized that I'm the kind of guy who doesn't follow the crowd; I'm classy, even if I do dress like a homeless person. I've got to shop more often at K's Merchandise; they make me feel like a rock star.

[Phone icon]

telephone ringing
When you make a call, the ringing you hear (called ringback) is generated electronically; you're not hearing any phone at the destination of your call, any more than you hear anything from the destination when you get a busy signal. You hear a single phone ringing whether there be zero, one, or multiple phones connected at your destination.

In the US, the busy signal should be 480 and 620 Hz interrupted at 1 Hz. Normal ringing should be 350 and 440 Hz, 2 seconds on, 4 off. Ten rings is a minute. Hang up already! [Unless you have automatic camp-on.] Cf. RG.

A self-telemarketer.

An English noun for an artificial mound that covers, or is assumed to cover, ancient ruins. It's a loan word from Arabic. It's a funny term, ``loan word.'' Like we plan to give it back. Arabic can have as many English words as it likes, but I don't think they'd have much use for a tell, especially since it's been fitted with the double ell. I suppose it was transliterated with two ells to make the pronunciation evident. The Hebrew cognate when transliterated usually comes across as tel. In Hebrew, Arabic, and various other Semitic languages, it's spelled with a single lamed (or lam, etc.); i.e., it is written with just two consonants. Ironically, the three-consonant spelling in English apparently restores the original three-consonant form of the Proto-Semitic root. See the tel entry for details.

The Electronic Library Of Science. An imprint of Springer-Verlag New York. You'd kind of expect them to have a web presence, and as of 2005 they do, but it's all indirect, so I judge that the imprint has been discontinued. With publishing facilities on a ``Pruneridge Avenue'' (in Santa Clara, CA), I'm not surprised. According to the blurb on one of their books (from 1997): ``All TELOS publications [had] a computational orientation to them, as TELOS' primary publishing strategy [was] to wed the traditional print medium with the emerging new electronic media in order to provide the reader with a truly interactive [etc.].''

Transmission Electron Microscop{e|y}. The original ``electron microscope'' was invented by Ruska in 1935. Essentially arranged like an optical microscope, but using electrons. Samples are usually thinned in a multistep process down to no more than a micron thickness, and typically 0.2µm and less.

Lookee here. And this site too.

Transverse Electro-Magnetic. (Typically refers to nature of waveguide-confined microwave mode.) Cf. TE, TM.

TExas Medieval Association.

I know what you're thinking, but no, it's not a political party.

Trace Elements in Man and Animals.

Towing Equipment Manufacturers Association. TEMA became an NTEA affiliate organization in 1984.

N,N,N',N'-TEtraMethylEthyleneDiamine. Catalyst for polymerization.

Pronounced tem-PEA. If you followed football you would know this.

Once a woman in a library paused and needed help pronouncing Chaminade. ("Shah-m'NOD," secondary stress on the first syllable, of course.) I didn't want to embarrass her, so I didn't add that -- as everyone else recalls -- the biggest upset in college basketball history took place when the No. 1-ranked Virginia Cavaliers, with the No. 1-ranked college player Ralph Sampson, were shocked in Honolulu by little Chaminade, an 800-student NAIA school. Chaminade player Richard Haenisch recalled

Nobody knew how to say our name. They thought it rhymed with ``lemonade.'' Then you heard people say, ``Yes, Virginia, there is a Chaminade.''

The historic game took place on December 23, 1982. What many regard as the pivotal play was an alley-oop to Tim Dunham. Haenisch, now a broker in Los Angeles, recalled ``Dunham said he was 6-1 or 6-2. He was 5-10.'' (For more on lying about heights, see the recent photograph entry.) Twenty years later, Dunham is the pastor of the Greater Faith Missionary Baptist Church in Pittsburg, California, and I'm tempted to list that church in the nomen est omen entry. He doesn't discuss his height, but he does say this:

Every once in a while you meet people who ask me what I did, and I make mention of that victory. And it's ``Oh yeah, I remember that.''

temporal logic
A philosophers' plaything. More commonly called a tense logic.

temporarily out of order
Out of order, and we don't plan to replace it.

Trans-Europ N{ight|acht|uit|otte|...}. Old name for international sleeping-car trains in Europe. It's hard to believe, but the ``continent'' of Europe is actually large enough that you could once catch some shut-eye going across it. Cf. TEE.

Try Red Feather Institute. This spot (T. R. Young's own private universe) has some wonderful examples of tedious and completely specious invocations of Science. Stay with it, self-parody is the best kind. You'll warm to the unintended humor. Entertainment value, and not mere justice, is the real reason political censorship should be strenuously opposed.

Texas Educational NETwork.

Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation. A kind of E-STIM, q.v.

tense logic
It's not that the logic is particularly on edge, and it's not the logic of being edge (that would be tenseness logic, I suppose). That's two things it's not, and perhaps that still leaves open a few possibilities. But why should I explain it here when I already explained it before?

Totally Enclosed, NonVentilated (motor). Since it's totally enclosed, you might ask: ``ventilate what''? The outside of the housing, for cooling purposes.

ThermoElectric Power.

Turbulent EquiPartition. A useful concept in plasma physics.

Tepco, TEPCO
Tokyo Electric Power CO. They got a little bit of unwanted free publicity after the tsunami that hit Japan in 2011.

TetraEthyl PyroPhosphate.

Transient-Evoked OtoAcoustic Emission[s] (OAE).

TetraEthOxySilane or tetraethosiloxane or tetraethyl orthosilicate. All equivalent names for Si(OC2H5)4. Liquid source used for pyrolytic deposition of SiO2.

TERrence. P. Terentius Afer (d. 159 BCE). Wrote Roman comedies. Roman comedy is a rare taste. Roman holidays, on the other hand, are not just rare but downright bloody.

Train Express Régional. French for `regional express train.'

You know, there really isn't any such thing as a French language. What they do is, they sprinkle some accents on English words, scramble the word order a bit, and pronounce it funny. Basically, it's just bad English.

Cf. franglais.

Editions Trans-Europ-Repress. A French publisher of scholarly reprint editions.

The Education Resources Institute.

Temperature and Emissivity measurements by Reflection Method.


terminate with extreme prejudice
A technical TERM that we finish off at the kill -9 entry.

termite flatulence
It contributes to global warming.

A nonce word compounded of terrarium and -ology, with an epenthetic t. The word seems to exist in English primarily to translate the German word Terrarienkunde, which means something like, say, ``the study of the care of terrarium animals.'' More at the DGHT entry.

tertiary education
The kind of education that is called post-secondary in the US. Since the term ``secondary education'' appears to be widespread, this usage is natural, but among the larger English-speaking countries, it seems to be standard only in Australia and common in Britain, but unusual in North America. I've seen the term ``third-level education'' in Irish documents.

Teaching English as a Second Language. This seems to assume knowledge of a first language. Since the second language (L2) is, not to examine the point too closely, a foreign language, TESL and TEFL are the same thing.

Teaching English as a Second Language to Adults. TEFLA is a far more common term.

Tesla, Nikola
Brilliant; wildly successful and tragic; practical problem-solver and visionary idealist; self-promoting and underappreciated; a Serb (deal with it). (Pretending that he was a Croat because he was born in Croatia is not ``dealing'' with it.) His cult status should come as no surprise. Here's a sober site. He also has autobiography on line.

An explanation of his revolutionary brushless AC motor is given in Jack Foran's ``The Day They Turned The Falls On: The Invention Of The Universal Electrical Power System.''

SI unit of magnetic induction (B). One tesla `equals' 10,000 gauss. The tesla unit, like the majority of SI name units (and most of the ones used by physicists), is abbreviated as a single capital letter (`T').

[E]quals is in quotes above because different electromagnetic units correspond to different systems of equations. In general, one does not directly measure a quantity like magnetic field or even mass, but measures, say, the motion of a charged or massive particle and derives the field or mass from an appropriate equation. Although any given set of equations is equivalent to any other, the relations between various quantities differ by multiplicative factors (typically factors of four pi between rationalized and unrationalized systems, and dimensional factors like c as well). In other words, the statement the ``one tesla equals 10,000 gauss'' should be interpreted in the following way: if the magnetic induction (BrMKS) in a rationalized-MKSA description has a magnitude of 1 tesla, then the magnetic induction (Bcgs) in cgs-Gaussian units has a magnitude of 104.

There are no excellent descriptions of the situation that I am aware of, but a good explanation, covering the most popular systems to a greater or lesser extent, is given in Jackson

Teaching English as a Second or foreign language -- an Electronic Journal (outlink here). This link is served from Japan. It stands to reason. The subways of Tokyo are filled with advertisements showing beautiful girls in bikinis and wedding dresses, encouraging Japanese strap-hangers to learn this important language of commerce and social intercourse.

Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages. Founded in 1966, headquarted in Alexandria, Virginia. As they explain, ``TESOL -- teachers of English to speakers of other languages -- is an acronym that refers to both the field itself and the professional association.'' Indeed, I've seen TESOL expanded as the name of the activity engaged in by the profession: ``Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages.''

TESOL is one of those few organizations that is not a US college or university but that has an .edu domain name. After launching a new site at the their .org domain, they stopped updating the .edu site.

TEmporary Sleep Station. A temporary station for sleeping aboard the ISS. A guest bed for visitors from Earth. It is used as a bed when it's not otherwise occupied as a purple duck, or a mountainside, or a quarter after three. Whoops, got my functions mixed up there. When it's not a sleep station, it's a hygiene station. When the TeSS is converted from a hygiene station into a sleep station, its hygiene liner is removed, its filters stowed in Ziploc bags, and the blanket reinstalled. If this is the International space station, why can't they bring in someone for a low-wage country to do this stuff? Anyway, visitors also need, um, hygienic facilities, so a part of the lab is converted to that purpose for the duration. I suppose there's some good reason why they don't just have visitors sleep in the lab. I've slept in labs. I'm sure it beats the sidewalk grating across the street from the White House. You can read more about visitor accommodations at this ISS status log for May 25, 2009.

TESS, Tess
Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite. A satellite to survey nearby stars in search of planets. Specifically, it is meant to search for systematic dimming that indicates the transit of an exoplanet across the face of its sun. The project is under development by a collaboration led by G.R. Richter of MIT, and as of this writing (June 15, 2009) is one of six finalists for a slot on NASA's launch manifest as a ``small explorer'' (SMEX) mission.

Tess of the d'Urbervilles
An 1891 novel by Thomas Hardy, subtitled ``A Pure Woman Faithfully Presented.'' This is not a happy story. I don't even want to think about it. I wish people would stop giving girls, satellites and ISS facilities names like Teresa or Tess.

Latin, `according to.' Used to indicate oral testimony, as opposed to fide -- written testimony.

A steroid. An endochrine hormone present in much larger concentrations in men than in women.

Transcutaneous Energy Transmission. Any scheme for wireless power supply of implanted medical devices. A typical TET scheme is essentially a distributed transformer. The primary of the transformer lies outside the skin, and an AC current put through the primary coil generates a time-varying AC voltage across the terminals of a secondary coil, located subcutaneously and electrically attached to whatever it is you want to power. A full-wave rectifier (four diodes in a bridge, with a little capacitance in parallel to smooth the output) will produce a serviceable DC, but sometimes it's more convenient simply to use AC.

Transient Energy Transfer.

No definition. I'm just practicing accents today.

TransEuropean Trunked RAdio.


tetrahedral, tetrahedron
A regular tetrahedron is the surface formed when four equal equilateral triangles are joined at the edges or the solid enclosed by that surface. This triangular pyramid is the Platonic solid having the smallest number of faces. [``Tetra hedron'' means ``four face'' in Greek.]

If four atoms (``nearest neighbors'') are at a constant distance from some other (``central'') atom, while the sum of the distances (or squared distances) among themselves is maximal, then the four neighbors are arranged at the corners of a tetrahedron, at equal distances sqrt(8/3) a from each other, where a is the distance from the central atom to any of the nearest neighbors. The angle between any two neighbors, measured from the center, is the ``tetrahedral angle'' Arccos(-1/3) ~= 109.47° ~= 1.910633 radians from each other.

Maximization problems like this (sometimes called ``dictators on a planet'' problems) are quite difficult to treat analytically or generally in cases where the number of points whose separation sum is to be maximized does not equal the number of vertices in a regular solid.

tetrahedral bonds
The tetrahedral structure defined in the previous paragraph is assumed by the silicate and ammonium ions, by methane and silane, and by very many other simple chemical species. The reason is that the valence electrons in many cases bond in ``hybridized sp³ orbitals.'' This is apparent for carbon and silicon bonding, but occurs in hidden form in many other species. The angle defined by H--O--H would be tetrahedral, for example, but for the difference in electrostatic repulsion between unbonded electron pairs and bonded hydrogen atoms.

Technical Escort Unit. The US Army's hazmat folks, part of SBCCOM. Their mission is to ``conduct no-notice deployment to provide chemical and biological advice, verification, sampling, detection, mitigation, render safe, decontamination, packaging, escort and remediation of chemical and biological devices or hazards worldwide in support of crisis or consequence management and chemical and biological defense equipment, technical intelligence and doctrine development.''

Twenty-foot (container) Equivalent Unit. A measure of cargo volume. The twenty-foot container referred to is a box standardized for convenient multi-modal transfer -- by crane between truck or train or a stack on a ship.

TeraElectronVolt. (When the unit is spelled out in ordinary text, it should be in lower case -- teraelectronvolt. Then again, the SI people frown on electron volts as a unit, so frown right back. Anyway, no one writes it out.) A teravolt is 1012 volts; 1 TeV = 1000 GeV

Today's English Version (of the Bible). Much better known as the golden paperback entitled The Good News Bible. Published in 1976.

Bible purchases go up in bad times. I suppose you could put them in your portfolio as an anticyclical hedge. To judge from this CNN article, Bible sales rise ten to twenty percent during recessions.

Typesetting language developed by Donald Knuth. DK, a very bright fellow, insists that the X is pronounced like kh -- that is, like ch in Loch or Bach, written /x/ in the IPA. This is supposed to conform to the identification of ``X'' as a Greek letter chi. In fact, however, it is fairly clear that the Greek chi was a hard k sound, the aitch being used in transliteration (as in the root for chiral and Christ, to say nothing of chiastic) to indicate aspiration.

TeX is a bit inconvenient to learn, but equivalent functionality is available nowhere else. Also, unlike the equation editor in Framemaker, it won't leave you raving in anger, usually.

Present participle of the verb to text, meaning to send a cell-phone text message. ``For Texting Teens, an OMG Moment When the Phone Bill Arrives'' was the title of a front-page article in the Washington Post (by Margaret Webb Pressler; Sunday, May 20, 2007). Sophia Rubenstein, 17, was interviewed for the article. She's in the demographic (``those between the ages of 13 and 24'') that is ``most likely to send and receive text messages'' (see also sexting). In April, she racked up 6,807 (outgoing) text messages. Supposing that she sleeps eight hours a day and does not text in her sleep, that means she texted at a rate of one message every 4 minutes and 14 seconds while awake (see Blackberry thumb). ``For a teenager to send thousands of text messages a month is not unusual,'' said John Johnson, a spokesman for Verizon Wireless. Last month the company introduced an unlimited texting plan because even its highest bundle of free text messages -- 5,000 a month -- wasn't enough.

text critic
Text critics are practitioners of text criticism. This is a scholarly discipline -- a branch of philology -- that tries to recover the original text of a work. Text critics produce scholarly editions, and are thus also known as editors. The coolest thing about them is their cute viciousness. They are quintessential demonstrations of the saw that academic quarrels are vicious because the stakes are small. (It's an old observation, dating back at least to Woodrow Wilson, but it is currently widely attributed to Henry Kissinger. Of course, in their own eyes the stakes seem enormous.)

The most vicious swordsman of text-critical combat was A. E. Housman, and it's surprising I don't have a good example of his rapier wit eviscerating some inferior prior editor of Manilius, say. I'll have to find some later. (For an example of his general cattiness, see Housman, A. E.) I only came here to give an example from Samuel Johnson...

In 1744, Sir Thomas Hanmer published an Oxford edition of Shakespeare's works. It came out in time for Samuel Johnson, who was writing Observations on Macbeth (1745), to add a section to it of Remarks on Sir T.H.'s Edition of Shakespeare, which included this nice bit, which I can only think to call an extended paralipsis:

Surely the weapons of criticism ought not to be blunted against an editor who can imagine that he is restoring poetry while he is amusing himself with alterations like these....

A distributor of books in Spanish. The word texto has about the same semantic range in Spanish as text does in English.

A Macintosh implementation of the language REXX, written by Jose Aguirre. The name does not reflect the fact that he was living in Texas at the time. It does reflect the fear that ``Rexx'' might be a copyright infringement and that ``Sexx'' might offend.

The above is based on J.A.'s communication with Antreas P. Hatzipolakis, quoted in Anopolis.

Total Electron Yield (a synchrotron X-ray source technique).

Teaching English to Young Learners.

(Domain name extension for) French Southern Territories.

Task Force. In Spanish: ``grupo de tareas'' (GT).

Technical Feasibility.

Thomas-Fermi. Refers to the first kind of statistical approximation to the energy of many-electron systems, proposed independently by E. Fermi and by Thomas: The calculation essentially uses the classical energy in the 6-dimensional phase space for independent particles, a self-consistent potential energy in the classical energy, and a phase space density of 1/(aitch-bar)^3 per spin below the Fermi energy (and zero above). In other words, the energy is a functional of the (spatial) electron density, and the Fermi energy and the total system energy (as well as the electron density and its functionals) are found by minimizing the energy subject to the constraint on particle number (or average density, for infinite systems).

Numerous improvements have been suggested over the years, principally to incorporate exchange effects. [Or exchange and correlation effects, since TF has traditionally been compared to Hartree-Fock (HF) theory.] For a thorough review of Thomas-Fermi theories, see Elliott H. Lieb: ``Thomas-Fermi and Related Theories of Atoms and Molecules,'' Reviews of Modern Physics, 53, 603-641 (Oct. 1981).

In 1960 or 61, Edward Teller proved a surprising theorem, that under naïve TF theory there was no binding of neutral molecules. Despite the nonbinding theorem, TF theory eventually turned out to play a rôle in proving the stability of matter (not that the stability of matter was ever much in doubt, but one wanted to know that it is guaranteed within the quantum formalism we use).

The logical continuation of Thomas-Fermi theory is in electron density functional theory (DFT).

{Time|Trade} For. Originally short for TFP and/or TFCD: Time (in exchange) For Prints and/or image files on a CD. Now, of course, the digital image files might be transferred in some other way than on a CD. TF, TFCD, or TFP is an arrangement between a photographer and a model in which the model's compensation doesn't include money.

Toroidal Field.

True or False. Often, that's the fallacy right there.

Texas Faculty Association. Affiliated with the Texas State Teachers Association (TSTA, q.v.).

TriFluoroAcet{ ate | ic [acid] }.

Total Fault Coverage.

{Time|Trade} in exchange For image files on CD. See this TF entry.

Thin Film Diffractomet{ er | ry }.

TetraFluoroEthylene. See TEFLON.

Thermionic Field Emission. You know: the Edison effect.

Tunneling Field-Effect Transistor.

The Five Gospels. Also T5G. A publication of the Jesus Seminar. The fifth gospel, in addition to the four canonical ones, is the Gospel of Thomas, q.v..

Gee, the number of gospels is proliferating. In the Summer of 2002 the Bible Review has an article by Charlie Hedrick on ``the 34 gospels.''

Transport For London.

Texas Foreign Language Association. Founded in 1953. Member of ACTFL, SWCOLT, and JNCL/NCLIS.

Tennessee Foreign Language Institute. (They have a logo in which the fourth initial is in lower case, and the dot on that i is a globe.) They have an address on French Landing Drive.

TriFluoroMethane Sulfonic Acid.

Tandem-Free Operation.

{Time|Trade} in exchange For Prints. See this TF entry.

Thermal Flashblindness Protection Device.

Temporary Flight Restriction.

Thomas-Fermi-Scott. A form of Thomas-Fermi (TF) theory incorporating a correction that accounts for the bounded density of electrons in the vicinity of a nucleus. First proposed by J. M. S. Scott in Phil. Mag. 43, 859 (1952) as a kind of surface correction at the origin, it takes the form of excluding from the integration of the Thomas-Fermi functional a region of radius 1/Z around a nucleus with Z protons, and replacing it with a contribution Z² /2 to the energy (all in atomic units: radius in bohrs (a0), energy in hartrees (H).

Much later, a more `rigorous' derivation was given by Julian Schwinger in Phys. Rev. A 22, 1827 (1980), obtaining the same coefficient of Z² in the correction.

Thin-Film SOI.

Thin Film Transistor.

Texas Federation of Teachers.

Texas teachers do not have collective bargaining.


Thesaurus formarum totius Latinitatis a Plauto usque ad saeculum XXum There may be some information on it on this page. Also known as Cetedoc Index of Latin Forms. (CILF).

Trivial File Transfer Protocol.

Tokomak Fusion Test Reactor. At Princeton University Forrestal Plasma Lab. Decomissioned already.

The Film Whose Name Shall Not Be Uttered. Medievalists' name for the movie Braveheart, a movie whose poster could illustrate the fraud, anachronism, and bad history entries in any medievalist's dictionary. See the sword-and-sorcery entry.

Toxic eFfeCtS. The order of the letters is correct. F/X is a near homonym used to stand for effects.

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