23 tech terms we’d like to ban

These technology buzzwords are overused and abused -- but refuse to die. Please help us stamp them out.

11. "Social graph" is a marketing term that means... well, we have no idea what it means, and we suspect those who use it don't either.

12. When IT administrators map out their networks, they typically draw a little cloud to signify the Internet. But calling the Internet "the Cloud" is taking things a little too literally. (We never liked "Saas" much, either.) And the spinoff term "cloudsourcing" must bear the bulk of the blame for the truly execrable "crowdsourcing" that followed in its wake.

13. When people say "form factor," what they mean to say is "dimensions" or (even more simply) "shape." The extra word isn't impressing anybody.

14. Sometimes we kind of wish people who say "bleeding edge" would end up on one.

15. We'd pay money just to see a new tech gadget that actually incorporated "bells and whistles."

16. When talking about the cost of something, there's no need to say "price point." It's like calling "tuna" "tuna fish."

17. "Prosumer," as a marketing term for high-end products, means very close to nothing. What, exactly, is a professional consumer?

18. The next time someone says "gimme your digits," we'll try to resist handing over a bag of fingers.

19. "Future-proof?" Who are we fooling? Nothing is built to last more than two years.

20. There was probably a time in history when the phrase "eye candy" sounded vaguely edgy, maybe back when Miami Vice regularly featured nose candy busts. As for "ear candy" -- yuck!

21. Not sure whether someone is sold on your business idea? Just insist that it will "monetize," and your funding is in the bag. Better yet, use "monetization" to "incent" your audience to recognize the lurking "value proposition." Or be like the little red hen and "productize" your idea with a little "architecting" of your own.

22. Acts of nature -- such as an earthquake or a visit from an in-law -- are "disruptive." Calling a new technology "disruptive" gives it far too much credit.

23. "Synergy" describes the combined action of two elements working together in a mutually beneficial way. We just think it's one of those feel-good things CEOs like to say to draw your attention away from what's going on behind the scenes.

Have your own nominations for our list of the most annoying tech terms and phrases? Add them in the comments area.

Join the newsletter!


Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags internetunified communicationsNetworking

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Pope

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.

Tom Sellers


This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang


It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries


As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr


The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?