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Kendriya Vidyalaya Port Trust, Kochi

Twitter slang and jargon

Discussions on and about Twitter are rife with all sorts of abbreviations and jargon that can confuse new Twitter users. What are people talking (and tweeting) about? The following glossary defines some of the confusing abbreviations and Twitter lingo you might come across.

AFAIK: As Far as I Know.

bot: An account run by an automated program. You can find good bots, such as the ones that pull in all breaking news headlines from a media outlet. But you also can find bad bots, which put out only generic tweets, usually filled with links to Internet marketing sites or porn.

You can often spot these bots by a generic “hot chick” avatar or their uneven follower/following ratio (meaning that they’re following hundreds or thousands of people but have only a few following them back).

DIAF: Die in a Fire; expresses extreme anger with a person or about an idea.

direct messages (DMs): Private messages sent to specific Twitter users in your network.

dweet: A tweet sent while under the influence. Drunken tweeting can be amusing for your Twitter stream, but it can have lasting consequences for you because Google indexes all tweets. Be careful with dweeting!

early adopter: The enthusiastic people, often closely tied to the Silicon Valley digital-media community, who tend to be the first to use a new gadget or technology. Twitter’s early adopters, for example, are the ones who joined before or during the SXSW (South by Southwest) conference in March 2007, when Twitter made its first big splash.

FailWhale: The cartoon whale that appears when you try to load a page on the domain when the domain’s servers are overloaded. In Twitter’s early days, the tiny startup was known for unreliability because its rapid growth had outpaced its server power.

Back then, the FailWhale made an appearance as often as several times a day, and many Twitter users casually use the expression FailWhale to show disapproval of anything on or off Twitter that isn’t working properly. But don’t get too worried: The days of the FailWhale’s rampant appearances on Twitter have been over for months.

FTL: For the Loss. The opposite of FTW, FTL is a quick way to show disappointment or dissatisfaction.

FTW: For the Win; a quick way to show appreciation or enthusiasm. The term comes from gamer and hacker speak. Many of the shorthand abbreviations on Twitter have their roots in the vernacular that arose in video games, hacker forums, or instant-message programs as far back as the 1980s.

FWIW: For What It’s Worth.

hashtag: Words preceded by the # symbol. Basically, hashtags flag something as a keyword for searches. They’re surprisingly powerful, as real-time (but virtual) events, and even communities can (and do) form around them. At the time of writing, #journchat is a community of PR pros and journalists who discuss their trade every Monday evening.

IMO or IMHO: In My Opinion or In My Humble Opinion.

metrics: A way to measure what the service means for business and individuals as it relates to return on the time invested. Because Twitter has so many analytical applications built on its API, you can find tons of Twitter metrics out there.

After using Twitter for a little while, check out your Twitter grade at

microfunding or microgiving: A means of using microblogging to raise charity donations. Several Twitter apps, such as TipJoy, specialize in microfunding, and nonprofits, such as charity: water, have made Twitter microfunding a priority.

microsharing or microblogging: The niche of social media that encompasses Twitter. Other services — such as Jaiku, Pownce, and Plurk — have also specialized in microblogging, but none of them has achieved anywhere close to the following that Twitter has. Several microsharing services have already been shut down by their creators.

mistweet: A tweet that you send in error, either because you send it to the wrong person or you accidentally send a public tweet that you intended as a DM. Either way, it’s a tweet you regret sending.

OH: Overheard. Used to anonymously quote something funny that you heard, usually in real life. OHs look like this: “OH: ‘Did somebody smell bacon? Because I sure did.'”

To see all tweets that are prefaced with OH, follow @overheard on Twitter.

@replies: Public tweets directed at specific people — anyone can see them and jump into the conversation.

RT or R/T: Stands for retweet, Twitter’s equivalent of quoting. If you come across a tweet that you want to quote, giving credit to the original user, hover over a tweet and click the Retweet link that appears.

A retweet looks like this: “RT @pistachio Boston – outdoor skating party this weekend, Sunday at 1pm. DM me if interested?” By putting RT at the front of the retweet, you also make sure that everyone can see your tweet because some members choose to turn off @replies that are not directed at them.

Keep in mind, however, that retweeting adds characters to a tweet and may force it over the 140-character limit. If that’s the case, you might just want to link to it directly, instead. When prolific Twitter users put out a tweet that they want people in their network to retweet (for example, when they announce an event or charitable cause), many of them conscientiously keep it short to prevent that problem.

spammers: Spammers clutter up your Twitter stream and, just like with e-mail and other Internet tools, they send you useless content, usually trying to sell you something. Luckily, spamming on Twitter is hard because you don’t have to follow anyone, and because Twitter works hard to remove accounts that are trying to take advantage of others and violating their terms of service (TOS).

tweeple or tweeps: Some Twitter users say tweeps to refer to the Twitter community overall, whereas others use it to refer only to those in their networks.

tweet: Either a noun or a verb. Your 140-character updates on Twitter are called tweets, and you can also say, “I tweeted.”

tweetaholic or twitterholic: Someone who’s addicted to Twitter. Many avid users toss this term about in a self-deprecating way if they find themselves using Twitter more often than seems normal. Also, the term twitterholic can refer to, a Twitter metrics application that measures the relative popularity of Twitter users.

tweetup: A pun on meet-up, tweetup refers to a gathering of Twitter users organized through Twitter. Tweetups can take many forms: a get-together for Twitter users who happen to be in the same town for a concert or festival, locals who want to try out a new restaurant or bar, or even a late-night meeting of karaoke enthusiasts.

twinfluence: Short for twitter influence. Can be based on criteria such as number of followers, how often they’re retweeted, how many people @reply to them, or any other variety of metrics. An actual site at uses social network analysis to approximate the influence of different Twitter accounts.

TwitPic: One of the most popular third-party applications built on Twitter’s API. TwitPic lets you upload a photo, often from the camera on your cellphone, to TwitPic, which automatically sends a tweet that links to the picture and provides the caption of your choice.

twitter: Can be used as a verb (“I twittered that”) but not a noun. Note: Don’t say twit (“send a twit” is never correct, for example) because of that word’s negative connotations in some parts of the world.

Twitter squatter: Much like a domain squatter on the rest of the Web, someone who claims the Twitter username that corresponds to a popular brand name or the name of a famous person, often in hopes of some kind of personal gain or monetary profit.

Luckily, the guys behind Twitter deal with these people quickly if the person or brand in question wants that name back (William Shatner, Steve Wozniak, and others have been victims of squatters). You’re also not allowed to squat on any account name without using it as an active account. New users can request (and frequently receive) usernames abandoned for more than six to nine months.

Twitter stream: The constantly updating and flowing timeline of everyone that you choose to follow on Twitter; also called a feed.

Twitterati: A pun on literati and glitterati, these are Twitter’s perceived A-listers whom users want to follow or be followed by. It’s a lot beside the point of Twitter, which is to connect to the people that interest you the most, not just the most popular. Fortunately, bona-fide celebrities are starting to tweet, and with time, this word won’t mean very much.

twitterverse: The universe of people, tools, applications, and services on Twitter, meaning the entire Twitter community and ecosystem of other related things.

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Tips for a healthy heart

Heart disease may be a leading cause of death, but that doesn’t mean you have to accept it as your fate. Although you lack the power to change some risk factors — such as family history, sex or age — there are some key heart disease prevention steps you can take.

You can avoid heart problems in the future by adopting a healthy lifestyle today. Here are five heart disease prevention tips to get you started.

1. Don’t smoke or use tobacco
Smoking or using tobacco is one of the most significant risk factors for developing heart disease. Chemicals in tobacco can damage your heart and blood vessels, leading to narrowing of the arteries (atherosclerosis). Atherosclerosis can ultimately lead to a heart attack. When it comes to heart disease prevention, no amount of smoking is safe. Smokeless tobacco and low-tar and low-nicotine cigarettes also are risky, as is exposure to secondhand smoke.

In addition, the nicotine in cigarette smoke makes your heart work harder by narrowing your blood vessels and increasing your heart rate and blood pressure. Carbon monoxide in cigarette smoke replaces some of the oxygen in your blood. This increases your blood pressure by forcing your heart to work harder to supply enough oxygen. Even so-called “social smoking” — smoking only while at a bar or restaurant with friends — is dangerous and increases the risk of heart disease.

Women who smoke and take birth control pills are at greater risk of having a heart attack or stroke than are those who don’t do either. This risk increases with age, especially in women older than 35.

The good news, though, is that when you quit smoking, your risk of heart disease drops dramatically within just one year. And no matter how long or how much you smoked, you’ll start reaping rewards as soon as you quit.

2. Exercise for 30 minutes on most days of the week
Getting some regular, daily exercise can reduce your risk of fatal heart disease. And when you combine physical activity with other lifestyle measures, such as maintaining a healthy weight, the payoff is even greater.

Physical activity helps you control your weight and can reduce your chances of developing other conditions that may put a strain on your heart, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes. It also reduces stress, which may be a factor in heart disease.

Try getting at least 30 to 60 minutes of moderately intense physical activity most days of the week. However, even shorter amounts of exercise offer heart benefits, so if you can’t meet those guidelines, don’t give up. You can even break up your workout time into 10-minute sessions.

And remember that activities such as gardening, housekeeping, taking the stairs and walking the dog all count toward your total. You don’t have to exercise strenuously to achieve benefits, but you can see bigger benefits by increasing the intensity, duration and frequency of your workouts.

3. Eat a heart-healthy diet
Eating a special diet called the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) eating plan can help protect your heart. Following the DASH diet means eating foods that are low in fat, cholesterol and salt. The diet is rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains and low-fat dairy products, which can help protect your heart. Beans, other low-fat sources of protein and certain types of fish also can reduce your risk of heart disease.

Limiting certain fats you eat also is important. Of the types of fat — saturated, polyunsaturated, monounsaturated and trans fat — saturated fat and trans fat increase the risk of coronary artery disease by raising blood cholesterol levels.

Major sources of saturated fat include:

  • Red meat
  • Dairy products
  • Coconut and palm oils

Sources of trans fat include:

  • Deep-fried fast foods
  • Bakery products
  • Packaged snack foods
  • Margarines
  • Crackers

Look at the label for the term “partially hydrogenated” to avoid trans fat.

Heart-healthy eating isn’t all about cutting back, though. Most people need to add more fruits and vegetables to their diet — with a goal of five to 10 servings a day. Eating that many fruits and vegetables can not only help prevent heart disease, but also may help prevent cancer.

Omega-3 fatty acids, a type of polyunsaturated fat, may decrease your risk of heart attack, protect against irregular heartbeats and lower blood pressure. Some fish, such as salmon and mackerel, are a good natural source of omega-3s. Omega-3s are present in smaller amounts in flaxseed oil, walnut oil, soybean oil and canola oil, and they can also be found in supplements.

Following a heart-healthy diet also means drinking alcohol only in moderation — no more than two drinks a day for men, and one a day for women. At that moderate level, alcohol can have a protective effect on your heart. More than that becomes a health hazard.

4. Maintain a healthy weight
As you put on weight in adulthood, your weight gain is mostly fat rather than muscle. This excess weight can lead to conditions that increase your chances of heart disease — high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes.

One way to see if your weight is healthy is to calculate your body mass index (BMI), which considers your height and weight in determining whether you have a healthy or unhealthy percentage of body fat. BMI numbers 25 and higher are associated with higher blood fats, higher blood pressure, and an increased risk of heart disease and stroke.

The BMI is a good, but imperfect guide. Muscle weighs more than fat, for instance, and women and men who are very muscular and physically fit can have high BMIs without added health risks. Because of that, waist circumference also is a useful tool to measure how much abdominal fat you have:

Men are considered overweight if their waist measurement is greater than 40 inches (101.6 centimeters, or cm)

Women are overweight if their waist measurement is greater than 35 inches (88.9 cm)

Even a small weight loss can be beneficial. Reducing your weight by just 10 percent can decrease your blood pressure, lower your blood cholesterol level and reduce your risk of diabetes.

5. Get regular health screenings
High blood pressure and high cholesterol can damage your heart and blood vessels. But without testing for them, you probably won’t know whether you have these conditions. Regular screening can tell you what your numbers are and whether you need to take action.

Blood pressure. Regular blood pressure screenings start in childhood. Adults should have their blood pressure checked at least every two years. You may need more-frequent checks if your numbers aren’t ideal or if you have other risk factors for heart disease. Optimal blood pressure is less than 120/80 millimeters of mercury.

Cholesterol levels. Adults should have their cholesterol measured at least once every five years starting at age 20. You may need more frequent testing if your numbers aren’t optimal or if you have other risk factors for heart disease. Some children may need their blood cholesterol tested if they have a strong family history of heart disease.

Diabetes screening. Since diabetes is a risk factor for developing heart disease, you may want to consider being screened for diabetes. Talk to your doctor about when you should have a fasting blood sugar test to check for diabetes. Depending on your risk factors, such as being overweight or a family history of diabetes, your doctor may recommend first testing you for diabetes sometime between ages 30 and 45, and then retesting every three to five years.


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Learning Resource Centre (Library) @ Kendriya Vidyalaya, Madurai

PSA Support Material Class IX

Please click the following link to get 147 pages support material for class IX PSA


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Bhanu Athaiya 

Bhanu Athaiya

Bhanu Athaiya is Bollywood’s well regarded contume designer, having worked in over 100 films, since the 1950s, with noted filmmakers like Guru Datt, Yash Chopra, Raj Kapoor, Ashutosh Gowariker and international directors like Conrad Rooks and Richard Attenborough.

Her Work

She made her debut as a costume with the film CID in 1956 and followed it up with other Guru Dutt classics like Pyaasa (1956), Chaudhvin Ka Chand (1960) and Sahib Bibi aur Ghulam (1964). In her career spanning 50 years, she has received many awards, indluding the Oscar for best costume, for the 1982 film Gandhi, which made her the first Indian to win an Oscar. She has also won two National film awards in 1991 and 2002.

Returning the Oscar

Bhanu Athaiya has returned her Oscar statuette, to its original owner, the Academy of motion pictures Arts and Sciences, Los Angeles, She says, “I do…

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