What is an acronym?
An acronym is a word formed by joining elements of two or more words. The acronyms, on the other hand, are the terms that are made up of the first letters of the concepts that form an expression.
The main characteristic of acronyms is that, thanks to their configuration, they can be pronounced like a word, that is, they are read as they are written. The meaning of the acronyms is constituted by the sum of the meanings of the words that compose them, an example of this is radar. The origin of this notion is in the acronym that comes from the English Radio Detection and Ranging: (RA)dio (D)etection (A)nd (R)anging.
The formation of acronyms is very common, especially in the field of science and new technologies, where it is necessary to create words to designate new realities.
It should be noted that acronyms are also the terms that are created by linking the parts of two or more words. That is the case of office automation, a word created from office and computing. The acronym is made up of the first three letters for office (ofi) and the last six for computing (matic).
In these last two cases, as well as in many others, it is important to note that the meaning of the acronym also borrows parts of the definitions of the words that compose it, and not just fragments of their orthographic structures. For example, the term office automation refers to the use of information technology to complement the tasks of an office, and also to the group of computer programs and components used in this work environment.
Something similar can be seen in the acronym telematics, which is formed by taking the first four letters of the term telecommunication and the last six of informatics. In this case, we are dealing with a concept that refers to the discipline of science and technology dedicated to the analysis and implementation of applications and services for use in the fields of telecommunications and computer systems, something possible thanks to the fusion of both fields.
We must not forget one of the most used acronyms today, which has gone unnoticed in several of the previous paragraphs: informatics, which was born from the union between information and automatic. It is a particularly useful term to understand the phenomenon of combination of meanings that takes place when constructing an acronym.
How many people, outside the field of systems or not, are able to find the right words to define the word computing ? The acronym itself is so concise that it does not seem to require further explanation, and this demonstrates the effectiveness of its structure, something that should be taken as a fundamental objective of any acronym.
This is not always the case, especially when people begin to use acronyms from foreign languages without knowing exactly what they mean, and then pass them on to their family and friends, who perhaps further distort their use to give them new meanings. It should be mentioned that, however, this also happens with words of the language itself : in general, the younger generations adopt new ways of speaking, made up of expressions, terms and acronyms unknown to their parents and grandparents, and the latter do not they always understand them correctly, but they do not hesitate to add them to their vocabulary.