from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- transitive v. Slang To understand profoundly through intuition or empathy.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- v. To have or to have acquired an intuitive understanding of; to know (something) without having to think (such as knowing the number of objects in a collection without needing to count them: see subitize).
- v. To fully and completely understand something in all its details and intricacies.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- v. get the meaning of something
For those of you who read Robert Heinlein, you will realize that I stole the term grok from his novel, Strangers In A Strange Land, which was practically required reading for hippies.
A techi geek word, to grok is a coinage of science-fiction writer R.A. Heinlein, meaning to understand something thoroughly by having empathy with it.
I actually think that this is part of the secret of our success -- we write headlines like wire-service stringers, headlines that are meant to be easy to grok from a cluster of RSS links, search-results, and so on.
But what is up with the word grok turning up in that article, and so many others lately?
An emblem of this book's influence: the word "grok"--Martian for complete, instinctive understanding--has entered the language and a dictionary or two.
... calling grok a friendly packaged zope is like calling a pirahna a friendly packaged shark.
I might agree somewhat with whatever it is that you are trying to say if I could understand what it is you are trying to say, but unless you can fill out your thoughts into a cogent paragraph, I won't be able to 'grok' your thoughts.
What is interesting about this word choice is that I think the vast majority of Americans can follow what she is saying, but only a small percentage truly "grok" the meaning.
When ET wrote, had to have all my medical and biology textbooks on hand in order to "grok" his postings.
But I think your use of "grok" is a misnomer, given that "understand" and "grok" are only superficially synonymous.