Acronyms are a form of comunication that is propably just as old as the normal writen word as we know today (though, did the old Egytians use acronyms?). For a long time they were almost exclusively used in the millitary where their capacity to convey a meaning without being an order was invaluable.
Another area where acronyms are used extensively is the food and pharmacology industry. Here they are intended to convey meaning to the insiders without divulging information usable by consumers. To make sure they work as intended they are changed regulary.
They are extensively used in computer related environments, but then computer nerds continually pick up old technologies and pretend that they are new inventions. While for example hyroglyphs were superceded by more phoneticaly based 'alphabets', the computer world has reintroduced them in the form of Icons and pictograms while claiming they are better. Acronyms are often used for marketing purposes as a way to make things look impressive. The best acronlyms however are those used in a more personal context (e-mail, articles, etc. ) where they are used to convey (sometimes strong) emotions in an inoffensive way.
Emoticons are een special form of acronyms.
Tere are two types of acronyms, the first type comprises serious acronyms. They are used to reduce textual expansiveness, not to shield readers from unapropriate phrases. Things like SCSI, RGB, DNA fall in this category. Some of those can be found in my dictionary and jargon file. The other type is more colourfull and is described here.
Some of these acronyms, mostly copied from Tom Syroids site, are always handy. If you have an acronym you use regulary and you think it can be handy to others (that's me), e-Mail it to me, maybe with some context. If I think it is appropriat I will add it to the list (and pass it on to Tom).
Oh, BTW, some words are not decent. Things like the common term for procreation is used often in accronyms. ^__^'
|RSN||Real Soon Now (mostly used to indicate that it will eventualy get done but not immediately)|
|WTF||What the Fuck|
|BTDT||Been There Done That|
|FUBAR||Fucked up Beyond all Repair|
|SNAFU||Situation Normal... All Fucked Up|
|KISS||Keep it Simple Stupid|
|DGT||Don't Go There|
|ROT||Rant Off Topic|
|OBE||Overtaken by Events|
|The 7Ps||Previous Proper Planning Prevents Piss-Poor Performance|
|FYI||For Your Information|
|GID||Gee I Dunno|
|KRAFT (as in disease)||Kan't Remember A Fucking Thing|
|TITWIS||That Is The Way it IS|
|WYGIWYG||What You Get Is What You Get|
|MSML||Microsoft Mark-up Language (Temperamentfull Dialect of HTML)|
|GNBN||Good News / Bad News|
|EEI||Essential Element of Information|
|RTMF||Read the Fucking (fine) Manual|
|WHUTA||Wild Hairs up the Ass|
|BRB||Be Right Back|
|BTW||By the Way|
|SAY||Same As Yesterday|
|ESAD||Eat Shit and Die|
|TTFN||Ta-ta For Now|
|OTOH||On the Other Hand|
|TIC||Tongue in Cheek|
|GIGO||Garbage In, Garbage Out|
|IMO||In My Opinion|
|IMHO||IMO but a bit Humbled ()|
|ASAP||As Soon As Possible|
|I also encountered this with the "As Slow As Possible" meaning (in the army, but never spoken out loud)|
|DWIM||Do What I Mean|
|DWIMNWIS||Do What I Mean, Not What I Say|
|DTRT||Do The Right Thing|
|PAK||Press Any Key|
|CAT||Controll Alt Delete|
|TFS||Three Finger Salute (see CAT)|
|MFUE||Most Frequently Used Excuse|
|CUSP||Commonly Used System Program|
|GORP||Good Old Raisins & Peanuts|
|BOFH||Bastard Operator From Hell (copyrighted)|
|ROGL||Rolling On Ground Laughing|
|LOL||Laughing Out Loud|
|LMA (O)||Laughing My Ass Off|
|DAFF||Damned Ass Fucking Fools|
But remember DUAL.
A link to an acronym finder is always usefull.