When you're working from home, you can let co-workers know by using the texting abbreviation "WFH." But how do you disclose your location when you're working from neither home nor office?
The New Scientist (UK) reported in July on some inventive letter-symbol combinations to cover working from "just about anywhere." And it gave the lingo a "sciency" name: ergotopography, from the Greek words for "work," "place," and "writing."
Among the abbreviations proposed in the original column and in a follow-up report incorporating reader feedback:
WFA : Working from airport
WF\__ : Working from a sunlounger
WF\_O__/ : Working from a plane
WF# : Working from prison
WF===== : Working from a linear accelerator
WF : Working from space
WF~~~4~~~ : Working from a sailboat
WF/\(☺)/\ : Working from an obstetrics ward
Happy Labor Day, wherever you're (not) working from!
(Via Language Log; read the comments for suggested alternatives to ergotopography.)
On somewhat of a tangent, the most common variant where I work is "WAH", for "working at home." This particular string is more flexible in the hands of the linguistically inventive, given that it is both a word, almost, and is pronouncable (hence rhymeable). I suppose this could be WF|^|.
On a tangent on the tangent, when one is on vacation or the like, one sets an email auto-reply indicating this. This is almost universally known as an OOF message. The fact that OOF does not deinitialize correctly has been noted many times. I've seen theories that OOF derives from "out of facility" and was used in ancient versions of some software or other. Even given the possibilities of OOO, tho, I have yet to see that in use.
Posted by: mike | September 09, 2009 at 09:35 AM