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RSS: another poor tech name going mainstream

"RSS is a terrible name for a great technology; it can stand for either Rich Site Summary or Really Simple Syndication, and neither really tells you that it means subscribing to a Web site so you don't have to check it for updates." -David Pogue, NY TimesNY Times columnist David Pogue bashes the poor tech naming habits that have given us terms like RSS, EV-DO, Wi-Fi, U.

"RSS is a terrible name for a great technology; it can stand for either Rich Site Summary or Really Simple Syndication, and neither really tells you that it means subscribing to a Web site so you don't have to check it for updates."

-David Pogue, NY Times

NY Times columnist David Pogue bashes the poor tech naming habits that have given us terms like RSS, EV-DO, Wi-Fi, U.S.B., and GSM to use in everyday life:

Doesn't the tech industry realize that thinking up catchy, self-explanatory names would ultimately benefit it in the same way? They'd sell more of whatever it was, because they wouldn't scare off consumers who think they're being kept out of the high-tech club by a bunch of arrogant engineers. The technology would catch on quicker, too. The new product would be easier to describe, easier to use and easier to buy — which, for the companies, means easier to sell.

He is not alone. David Coursey wrote last week in response to Microsoft's RSS announcement:

I hope the RSS name will go away and become something even simpler, like a "subscribe" feature in RSS-enabled apps and on RSS-formatted data. Users shouldn't have to remember what the letters stand for or what syndication means, they just need better access to information, and RSS as Microsoft envisions it is a huge step forward.

So what could be a better name? Simply "subscribe" as Coursey suggests?