Pet Peeve: Calling Something a Hack When It’s Not

We’ve all been in the position of looking up how to do something with one of our electronics on the Internet. These days, it seems that many search results have the word “hack” in them, as in “Five Amazon Echo Hacks You Didn’t Know About”. I remember a time when a title like that meant you’d be clicking a link to a set of directions to make your device do something the manufacturer hadn’t intended, and may even frown upon. Now, it’s just a way to get people to click on rehashing of the directions that come with the equipment. In other words, these aren’t hacks. The manufactured wanted you to use these features. If anything, they’re lesser known features. Calling an documented feature a hack is like calling mayonnaise a secret sauce when you slap it on a ham sandwich. It doesn’t change anything, and it makes you look pretentious in the bargain.

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