My latest column for Visual Thesaurus looks at how the language of religion has infiltrated business vocabulary—from mission and vision to evangelist and come-to-Jesus meeting. Full access is, as usual, restricted to subscribers, and of course I devoutly hope you're among the self-anointed. Here's an excerpt:
Agnostic: In religious parlance, agnostic -- literally "without knowledge" -- refers to a person who has doubts about a deity or religious tenets. (The term was coined in 1869 by the English biologist Thomas Henry Huxley.) In business, and especially in technology, agnostic is a suffix attached to words such as platform, marketing, and media. In those contexts it simply means "neutral" -- a platform-agnostic program can run on PCs, Macs, and Linux machines; a media-agnostic publication is created for multiple channels (print, online, broadcast, etc.).