Back At Keyboard

What Does Back At Keyboard Mean?

Back at keyboard (BAK) is an Internet slang phrase used to alert others that a user has returned to his or her computer. These types of acronyms are often used in online text communications to identify the user’s status to other users at other locations.


Techopedia Explains Back At Keyboard

Unlike some other forms of abbreviated data, acronyms like BAK are not often intended to save data storage space or transmission space, at least in terms of the hardware and software resources used to communicate over the Web. Often, they are primarily meant to reduce the burden on the user. By creating these kinds of text shortcuts for common understanding, users can eliminate the need to type out phrases like ‘back at keyboard’ or other longer phrases, while using a keyboard to type out text communications. The particular acronym BAK corresponds to another acronym, AFK, that stands for away from keyboard.

In the earlier ages of Internet communications, typed text messaging was the only way to use the global IP network to communicate. With new Voice Over IP options, users can now chat with audio transmissions instead of text messaging. However, text-based communications on the Internet are still extremely popular, for instance, on social media platforms. As a result, acronyms like BAK and AFK still play a key role in high-tech communications.


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Margaret Rouse

Margaret Rouse is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical, business audience. Over the past twenty years her explanations have appeared on TechTarget websites and she's been cited as an authority in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine and Discovery Magazine.Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages. If you have a suggestion for a new definition or how to improve a technical explanation, please email Margaret or contact her…