Cruft is jargon for anything that is left over, redundant and getting in the way. It is used particularly for superseded and unemployed technical and electronic hardware and useless, superfluous or dysfunctional elements in computer software. The word may possibly originate from the Cruft Laboratory at Harvard University, U.S., where stacks of old and redundant radar research equipment dating back to World War II were conspicuous to students in the late twentieth century, but there may be other linguistic reasons for its wider adoption.
Anything unpleasant that accumulates over time.
/kruhft/ [very common; back-formation from crufty]
1. n. An unpleasant substance. The dust that gathers under your bed is cruft; the TMRC Dictionary correctly noted that attacking it with a broom only produces more.
2. n. The results of shoddy construction.
3. vt. [from `hand cruft', pun on `hand craft'] To write assembler code for something normally (and better) done by a compiler (see hand-hacking).
4. n. Excess; superfluous junk; used esp. of redundant or superseded code.
5. [University of Wisconsin] n. Cruft is to hackers as gaggle is to geese; that is, at UW one properly says “a cruft of hackers”.
a raised platform, as at the front of a room, for a lectern, throne, seats of honor, etc.
Some spoke to the man on the dais and were sent through the door behind him and up a turnpike stair.
– George R. R. Martin, A Feast for Crows , 2005
It was set upon a dais that Jemma was quite sure hadn’t been there the day before.
– Chris Adrian, The Children’s Hospital , 2006
1. a dispute about or concerning words.
2. an argument or debate marked by the reckless or incorrect use of words; meaningless battle of words.
3. a game played with cards, each bearing one letter, with which words are formed.
2.to carp; cavil.
1.an instance of the use of ambiguous, prevaricating, or irrelevant language or arguments to evade a point at issue.
2.the general use of such arguments.
3.petty or carping criticism; a minor objection.
1. amusing in an odd way; whimsically humorous; waggish.
1.a droll person; jester; wag.
1.Archaic. to jest; joke.
1.to move forward with a rising and falling motion.
2.(of a speeding motorboat) to leap clear of the water after striking a wave.
3.(of a torpedo) to appear above the surface of the water.
1.any of several small, gregarious cetaceans of the genus Phocoena, usually blackish above and paler beneath, and having a blunt, rounded snout, especially the common porpoise, P. phocoena, of both the North Atlantic and Pacific.
2.any of several other small cetaceans, as the common dolphin, Delphinus delphis.
1. a mass of snow, ice, etc., projecting over a mountain ridge.
2. Architecture. a. any prominent, continuous, horizontally projecting feature surmounting a wall or other construction, or dividing it horizontally for compositional purposes. b. the uppermost member of a classical entablature, consisting of a bed molding, a corona, and a cymatium, with rows of dentils, modillions, etc., often placed between the bed molding and the corona.
3.any of various other ornamental horizontal moldings or bands, as for concealing hooks or rods from which curtains are hung or for supporting picture hooks.
verb: to furnish or finish with a cornice.
To ravage is to pillage, sack, or devastate. The only time “ravaging” is properly used is in phrases like “when the pirates had finished ravaging the town, they turned to ravishing the women.” Which brings us to “ravish”: meaning to rape, or rob violently. A trailer court can be ravaged by a storm (nothing is stolen, but a lot of damage is done) but not ravished. The crown jewels of Ruritania can be ravished (stolen using violence) without being ravaged (damaged).
To confuse matters, people began back in the fourteenth century to speak metaphorically of their souls being “ravished” by intense spiritual or esthetic experiences. Thus we speak of a “ravishing woman” (the term is rarely applied to men) today not because she literally rapes men who look at her but because her devastating beauty penetrates their hearts in an almost violent fashion. Despite contemporary society’s heightened sensitivity about rape, we still remain (perhaps fortunately) unconscious of many of the transformations of the root meaning in words with positive connotations such as “rapturous.”
Originally, “raven” as a verb was synonymous with “ravish” in the sense of “to steal by force.” One of its specialized meanings became “devour,” as in “the lion ravened her prey.” By analogy, hungry people became “ravenous” (as hungry as beasts), and that remains the only common use of the word today.
If a woman smashes your apartment up, she ravages it. If she looks stunningly beautiful, she is ravishing. If she eats the whole platter of hors d’oeuvres you’ve set out for the party before the other guests come, she’s ravenous.
Your conscience makes you feel guilty when you do bad things, but your consciousness is your awareness. If you are awake, you are conscious. Although it is possible to speak of your “conscious mind,” you can’t use “conscious” all by itself to mean “consciousness.”
In modern English “confident’ is almost always an adjective. Having studied for a test you feel confident about passing it. You’re in a confident frame of mind. This spelling is often misused as a noun meaning “person you confide in,” especially in the misspelled phrase “close confident.”
The spelling “confidante” suggests that such a close friend might be a female, and conservatives prefer to confine its use to refer to women. But this spelling is also very common for males, and the spelling “confidant” is also used of both males and females. Either one will do in most contexts, but the person you trust with your deep secrets is not your “confident.”