IEEE Computer Society Style Guide

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V: volts. Examples: 45 V (n); 45-V (adj) power supply


v.: abbreviation for versus in a legal context (Smith v. Jones); see also vs.


Vac: volts of alternating current (25 Vac)


validation: testing a product or product specification to ensure that it meets the requirements (that it has the specified functions); compare with verification


Vanet: vehicular ad hoc network


VAR: value-added reseller


variable-length field


VAX: a mainframe made by Digital Equipment Corp.; plural is VAXs; VAX reportedly comes from virtual address extension (to the PDP-11)


VAX 11/725, 11/730, 11/750, 11/780, 11/782, 11/785, 8600: note slash, not hyphen


VAX/VMS: operating system for VAX computers; VMS stands for VAX Management System


VCCS: voltage-controlled current source


VCR: videocassette recorder


Vdc: volts of direct current (25 Vdc)


VDT: video display terminal, a generic term; not interchangeable with CRT


verification: determining whether a product meets its requirements (whether it does what it is supposed to); compare with validation






version: capitalize only when used with the name of a product (Microsoft Word Version 6.0). An acceptable informal abbreviation (except at the beginning of a sentence) is lowercase v, closed up next to a number: "Macsyma v2.0." The word version or its abbreviation is not always necessary: "Word 6.0 is a major release."


versus: see v. and vs.


vertices: plural of vertex


VGA: video graphics adapter (or array); an IBM color-display standard allowing 256 colors


VHDL: very high density logic; also VHSIC Hardware Description Language. Don't spell this out in Pervasive Computing when it means the latter.


VHSIC: very high speed integrated circuit


via: Use this word sparingly (It means "by way of," "through the medium or agency of," or "by means of.") Often, "through" works just as well and sounds less formal.


VIC: video interface chip


vice president: see CMS 8.21; capitalize when referring to the Vice President of the United States


videocassette, videocassette recorder


videoconference, videoconferencing


videodisk; video game


video on demand (n), video-on-demand (adj), VoD (abbreviation)


videotape (n, v)


videotex: interactive text/graphics communications system; also known as viewdata


video over IP




virtual memory


virtual reality (VR): In Computer Graphics and Applications don't hyphenate this when it's used as a compound adjective. Also, you normally don't need to spell this out in Computer Graphics and Applications.


VisiCalc: a financial spreadsheet program from now-defunct Software Arts Products


VLSI: very large-scale integration. VLSI can be used as a stand-alone noun when referring to the concept but not to physical objects—for example, VLSI circuit, VLSI chip; VLSI also is acceptable for VLSI Technology Inc.


VM: virtual machine; also JVM or Java virtual machine




VMS: VAX Management System, an operating system for DEC VAX computers


Vnet: an IBM internal network


VoD: video on demand (n)


voice over IP (n), voice-over-IP (adj), VoIP (abbreviation)


von Neumann (adj): refers to the concept of storing data and the instructions that apply to that data together; the stored-program concept (von Neumann sort; non–von Neumann architecture); note that the second example takes an en-dash, not a hyphen


voxel: loosely speaking, a 3D pixel


VPE: visual programming environment


VPL: visual programming language


VPN: virtual private network


VRAM: video random-access memory


Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam: Free University, Amsterdam. Commonly used acronym (VU University Amsterdam) doesn't work—it's redundant.


VRML: Virtual Reality Modeling Language


vs.: normal abbreviation for versus, except in legal context, see v.; spell out in text; abbreviation is acceptable elsewhere


VT52, VT100, VT101, VT102, VT131, VT220: Digital Equipment Corp. video display terminals





W: watts (25-W dissipation)


W.: "west" in addresses


W3C: World Wide Web Consortium


wafer-scale integration


WAN: wide area network. Don't spell this out in the optional magazines.


WAP: Wireless Application Protocol


Washington, DC






wave front


wave function


WCGA: World Computer Graphics Association


WDM: wavelength-division multiplexing


WDP: World Data Processing


Web: short name for the World Wide Web; Net is the short name for the Internet


Web browser, Web services


webcam, webcast, weblog, webmaster, webpage, webserver, website


well: a well-defined concept; the concept is well defined (don't hyphenate "well" words following being verbs)


WG: see working group


Whetstone: benchmarks




white list, white pages


-wide (suffix): see CMS 7.85, Table 3


wideband (adj)


Wi-Fi: wireless products certified by the Wi-Alliance to be interoperable


Wii Remote


wiki: computer software for creating, editing, and linking web pages


Wikipedia: a multilingual, web-based encyclopedia project operated by the Wikimedia Foundation.


wild cards


John Wiley & Sons




WIMP: windows, icons, menus, pointing devices


Windows 95/98/NT/2000/Me


WinZip: file compression program


wireframe (adj): refers to a line drawing of a 2D or 3D object (a wireframe image)


wire wrap (n): a method of making an electrical connection in a circuit by wrapping wires around terminals


wire-wrapping (adj): as in wire-wrapping techniques


WISC: writable-instruction-set computing


WLAN: wireless local area network


word: a sequence of bits that a processor can act on simultaneously. More bits per word let the processor work on more data simultaneously. A word can be defined in terms of bytes (a two-byte word equals a 16-bit word), but bits are the more common unit; also Mword, Kword.


word-slice processor




working group: initial capitals if in a title, for example, "Working Group on Posix Definitions"; lowercase if generic


workflow, workload, workplace, worksheet


workspace: the amount of memory a program requires, over and above the amount necessary to store the program itself






World Wide Web: abbreviated WWW; see Web, WWW


WORM: write-once, read-many (times)




wrap-up (n), wrap up (v)


WSCI: Web service choreography interface


WSDL: Web Services Description Language; pronounced "whizdle"


WSN: wireless sensor network


WVGA: wide VGA


WWW: see World Wide Web; Web; depending on context, abbreviated form acceptable on first reference


WYSIWYG: stands for what you see is what you get; acceptable on first reference in departments, but spell out on first reference in feature articles




9/07 Xen: open source virtualization software


X.25: the network layer protocol in the ISO protocol suite


X.400: an ISO mail protocol


x-axis (n, adj)




X client (n), X-client (adj): see also X Window System


XDR: External Data Representation; a protocol


Xenix: an operating system similar to Unix from Microsoft for PCs based on the Intel 8088, 80286, and 80386 chips


Xerox PARC: now just PARC


XGA: extended graphics array; a high-resolution graphics standard introduced by IBM in 1990




XLink: XML Linking Language


XMI: XML Metadata Interchange


Xmodem: abbreviated term for cross-modem, an error-free file-transfer protocol


XML: Extensible Markup Language


XMPP: Extensible Messaging and Presence Protocol


XMS: extended memory specification; used to address memory above 1 Mbyte in the 80286 and later CPUs


XMT: extensible MPEG-4 textual format


XNS: Xerox Network Services


XOR: exclusive-OR operation used in cryptography


XPath: XML Path Language


XPointer: XML Pointer Language


x-ray (n, adj, v)




XT: see IBM PC


XScale: an Intel processor


X Window System, X Windows (no hyphens): a graphics environment from MIT for Unix workstations


X11 Windows


xy-plane, also yz-, xz-planes


XSL: Extensible Style Sheet Language


XSLT: Extensible Style Sheet Language Transformation




Y2K Problem: the crisis that didn't happen in 2000


YACC: a compiler compiler; a Unix tool




y-axis: (n, adj)


years: to form plural, add an "s": 1990s; when referring to just the decade, spell out, for example, nineties


yellow pages


Ymodem: file transfer protocol




0-day: refers to the timing of viruses released the same day as a patch


z-axis: (n, adj)


z-buffer: storage for z-axis values for 3D images, sometimes called the "depth buffer"


Z80: a microprocessor from Zenith Data Systems




Zadeh, Lotfi: a pioneer in fuzzy logic; note the first name, often misspelled


ZIP: zigzag in-line package; a file-compression technique; ZIP code


Zmodem: successor to Xmodem and Ymodem