Check your e-mail, step into a chat room, or instant message someone, you might get confused by the icons and acronyms that propagate across the 'net. "Emoticons"--short for emotion icons, better known as "smileys"--add a bit of inflection or mood that would otherwise by lost in the text, and that can be embarassing and make the difference between making someone ROFL or angry.
Several websites can help you translate the smileys and acronyms. This siteis a short list of the more common ones, while this one focuses on the smiley-end. This site from computeruser.com as well as this one from netlingo.com give a more detailed listing of smileys. This site has the most detailed listing of smileys, separated by category, that I found, and has yahoo and MSN emoticons as well.
For This Week in Geek, I'm Mark Avery.