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sli

acronym Or Initializm, depending on the delivery; zero derivation metonymy (eponymy)/generalization; verb
SLI, v To join two or more graphics cards together so that they cooperate on the display, allowing for greater performance. [acronym SLI meaning 'scalable link interfacing', originally coined by nVidia, and conversion from noun to verb]
 
The speaker's usage, as with most acronyms, was probably the result of a desire to be succinct. It is mostly used in by those familiar with computers.
Etymology : I have heard this word used as both an initialism and an acronynm, with the speaker either saying the three letters or pronouncing the sound (like 'sly'), respectively. The acronym originally designated a technology designed by nVidia (graphics card manufacturer), meaning 'Scalable Link Interfacing', or a method of joining (interfacing) two graphics cards together in order to acheive a better customizable performance. It is now generalized to describe this technology from any manufacturer. This word shows a similar conversion (from noun to verb) to bridge. To 'bridge a gap' (verb) means 'to form a bridge over a gap' (noun), similar to the way 'to SLI two cards' (verb) has come to mean 'to form a scalable linking interface between them' (noun).
Source : 'You can get two cards and sli them and get better performance.' - Cousin, conversation about computers - August 2008
Last modified: 3 December 2008


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