BRAIN FOOD: Words-Worth - Clueful

It is always better to be useful than useless. Which helps explain why, having had 'clueless' for 100 years, we have now acquired 'clueful'. The adjective seems to have been coined by computer hackers, for whom cluelessness is a great crime. Such people were behind the Cluetrain Manifesto of 1999, which insisted that all clueful businesses had to leap on board the internet bandwagon or be left behind. Despite those associations, there are signs that clueful is being taken up more widely in company names and job ads.

Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010

Soon, as with 'underwhelming', no-one will recall that clueful started life as a joke. 'Clue' itself has come a long way. Originally, it meant a ball of string, before becoming the literal or metaphorical thread used to escape from a maze or a particularly knotty bit of computer code.

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