What is a recursonym?

After finding out that YAML is a retronymed recursive acronym, a coworker of mine (John Cruikshank) and I decided that we needed to coin a shorter term to mean “recursive acronym.” After all, if someone can come up with words like retronym, then why can’t we make our own words, too? So, we came up with the term recursonym. A recursonym, or recursive acronym, according to Wikipedia, is “an abbreviation that refers to itself in the expression for which it stands.” Popular examples include PHP (PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor) and GNU (GNU’s Not Unix). Wikipedia has a more complete list, if you need more examples to better understand how recursonyms work.

So, now that we’ve proven how cool we are by creating our own word, someone can pay us a whole lot of money.

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