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Yoga Korunta

Life & Politics

Location: United States

One learns, as nothing endures but change.

22 August 2006

Tuesday's Word: optimism

op·ti·mism ( P ) Pronunciation Key (pt-mzm) n.
A tendency to expect the best possible outcome or dwell on the most hopeful aspects of a situation: “There is a touch of optimism in every worry about one's own moral cleanliness” (Victoria Ocampo).
The doctrine, asserted by Leibnitz, that this world is the best of all possible worlds.
The belief that the universe is improving and that good will ultimately triumph over evil.
[French optimisme, from New Latin optimum, the greatest good. See optimum.][Download Now]
Source: The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition Copyright © 2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
Main Entry: op·ti·mism Pronunciation: 'äp-t&-"miz-&mFunction: noun: an inclination to put the most favorable construction upon actions and events or to anticipate the best possible outcome —op·ti·mist /-m&st/ noun —op·ti·mis·tic /"äp-t&-'mis-tik/ adjective
Source: Merriam-Webster's Medical Dictionary, © 2002 Merriam-Webster, Inc.
n 1: the optimistic feeling that all is going to turn out well [ant: pessimism] 2: a general disposition to expect the best in all things [ant: pessimism]
Source: WordNet ® 2.0, © 2003 Princeton University
What a programmer is full of after fixing the last bug and just before actually discovering the *next* last bug. Fred Brooks's book "The Mythical Man-Month" contains the following paragraph that describes this extremely well. All programmers are optimists. Perhaps this modern sorcery especially attracts those who believe in happy endings and fairy god-mothers. Perhaps the hundreds of nitty frustrations drive away all but those who habitually focus on the end goal. Perhaps it is merely that computers are young, programmers are younger, and the young are always optimists. But however the selection process works, the result is indisputable: "This time it will surely run," or "I just found the last bug.". See also Lubarsky's Law of Cybernetic Entomology. [Jargon File]
Source: The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © 1993-2005 Denis Howe

This week's Word is by suggestion of Catherine Belle. It is with optimism that people who report relatively high levels of happiness feel toward life. Note, bloggers, Catherine's word comes from her own language, French, the language of a leader nation.


Blogger catherine belle said...

How about virtue as your next word?

Blogger Yoga Korunta said...

"Virtue" it is, Catherine. It is a state to be admired!


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