Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
h a l f b a k e r y
Quis custodiet the custard?

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Fuzzy Acronym Decoder

Provides partial translations for new acronyms
  [vote for,

This program can give you a full or partial translation of any acronym, even if the acronym is not in its dictionary.

To begin, the program analyzes the letters of the acronym and makes some preliminary translations, based on "frequently occurring significant pairs" corresponding to its acronym dictionary.

For example, give it "DOFS" and it might guess "Department Of [something]". Give it "HAODOFL" and it may guess "[something] on the floor, laughing."

At least that's better than being completely clueless.

Secondly, the Fuzzy Acronym Decoder takes these preliminary probable guesses and queries an Internet search engine, seeking "Department of * *" and "* * * * * on the floor, laughing".

The Fuzzy Acronym Decoder analyses the search results and finds successful ordered matches of initial letters.

For example, if one match is "Department Of Fecal Specimens" and 16 matches are "Department Of Financial Services" then the latter is the answer that will be returned.

If no partial translation yields a successful search, then the Fuzzy Acronym Decoder will return the partial translations alone. Even the partial translations may enable you to decipher the rest of the letters based on the context of the sentence.

phundug, Aug 29 2003

OneLook http://www.onelook.com/?lang=all
Kind of a metacrawler for dictionary sites. [krelnik, Oct 04 2004]


       I think this idea is ESTD and IWEMHIIW.
AO, Aug 29 2003

       Pick any ETLA, (extended three-letter acronym), and Ford will have at least 3 usages of it somewhere in the company.
RayfordSteele, Aug 29 2003


       F***d Up Zoo (unsure) Yeehaws Acting Cool Regardless Of New York's Medical Department (unsure) Cash On Delivery Emergency Room.   

       Works for me +
k_sra, Aug 29 2003

       Partially baked at OneLook.com, see link. It is a meta-searcher for dictionary sites, and it includes several acronym dictionaries. You can use '?' and '*' in your queries for unknown letters, so if you suspect part of it matches you can look up things like *OTFL and DOF*.
krelnik, Aug 29 2003

       What does it do about competing acronyms?   

       ABC: Australian Broadcasting Corporation, American Broadcasting Company
thesteve, Apr 21 2007


       Ages ago (mid-80's?), a friend (Richard) started using the term T.L.A. in conversation (IT) - When pressed, he'd admit it meant "Three Letter Acronym" - I've been using it ever since.
Dub, Apr 21 2007


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