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November 8, 2014 – Word of the Day:  hack


The word "hack" has a few different meanings. One popular use of the word identifies the activities of people who break into computers or cell phones:

  • Someone hacked his way into the company’s network of computers.
  • Hackers stole credit card numbers and other personal information. (A hacker is someone who hacks.)
  • To avoid being hacked, you should change your passwords frequently.
  • Brenda’s computer was hacked and now she can’t use it.

Beware of hackers!

There are other applications for this word as a verb:

  • Tim’s job was extremely difficult. He couldn’t hack it, so he quit. (can’t hack = can’t manage or bear)
  • Mildred was hacking up blood, so she went to the hospital. (hack = cough)
  • It took two hours to hack down that tree with an axe. (hack = cut)
  • The barber hacked off the man’s ponytail which was donated to be made into a wig.

You can also use the word "hack" to describe a person who isn’t very good at his job.

  • Ali’s accountant is a hack. He should use my accountant.
  • The hack who worked on my car didn’t fix the brakes properly.

A hacksaw is a type of handsaw with a removable blade:

  • Whenever I need to cut a pipe, I use a hacksaw with a special blade for cutting through metal.

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