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Episode 1502

Mimeographs and Dittos

How colors got their names, and a strange way to write. The terms blue and orange arrived in English via French, so why didn’t we also adapt the French for black and white? • Not every example of writing goes in one direction across the page...

The Origins of Ditto and Mimeograph

You may remember ditto machines (especially their smell), or even further back, mimeograph sheets. Both the words ditto and mimeograph were originally brand names. The word ditto goes back to an Italian word that means said, while mimeograph comes...

macaroon technique

macaroon technique  n.— «He used PowerPoint to impart what he calls the “macaroon technique,” referring to the sandwich-like French macaron pastry. This can be applied to most any product (including, presumably, a Xerox machine) and goes...

open the kimono

open the kimono  v. phr.— «“I went down to Xerox Development Corporation,” [Steve] Jobs said,…”and I said, ‘Look, I will let you invest a million dollars in Apple if you will sort of open the kimono at Xerox PARC...