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A thing of beauty is a joy forever.

On the freeway this afternoon, I drove past a vehicle with an ansiotropic paint job.

"My god!" I declared. "That car is ansiotropic!"

Then I swerved a bunch to avoid falling off the road.

Clearly, I was distracted. Was it the magically shifting colors that did this to me? Nope. It was the chance to use the word ansiotropic in a sentence.

Five syllables. And no one was around to hear me.



( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 31st, 2000 03:52 pm (UTC)
You keep using that word...I do not think it means what you think it means...
Well, not being familiar with ansiotropic, I went and checked the online dictionary off of your search page.

Imagine my surprise to find out the word doesn't exist! Although there is a word that's very close. It's anisotropic, which means "exhibiting properties with different values when measured in different directions." That sounds like what you described. It also sounds like something I'd like to see...

Kurt Onstad
Nov. 2nd, 2000 02:08 pm (UTC)
You say tomato, I say... tomato.
Your dictionary, while online, is still another relic of the dead print media.

Pick a search engine. I like Hotbot. Search for Ansiotropic. Search for Anisotropic. They bring up a comparable number of legitimate sources. Common usage for the term in circles where it's used go either way.

So, half of the world is wrong, huh?

Not really. One version lives in defiance of etymology, but the fact that it lives justifies itself. The word exibits different values when measured from different directions. What's wrong with that?

Language isn't about adhering to a standard (ironic, since we're discussing ANSIotropics) so much as finding effective ways to communicate ideas.

Language exists in this culture to placate and sell product to the lowest common denominator. If you confront them on their sloppy grammar and vocabulary, you're misusing the language.

Trade jargon doesn't adhere to the dictionary, and I'm very much using the word in that realm. Check your dictionary again in ten years, though. You'll at least find "see: anisotropic" by that point.

For simple examples of ansiotropics in action, check out an oil slick, or the reflective surface of a compact disc. The word can also be used to describe most politicians.

This car was cool, though. Driving behind it, it was a deep forest green. As I moved into the next lane, it did a T2 style morph, and the car was a shocking hot pink as I drove past it. A few seconds later, it was an orange car in my sideview mirror. Then I slowed down and watched it turn pink and then green again. I wanted to circle around it a few times, but figured this wasn't worth causing an accident over.

Just think, though.. If every car was like that, we'd never find our own vehicles in a parking lot.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )


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