Satire: Welcome to the COA (City Of Acronyms)

Tech startup companies have one thing in common: an overabundance of acronyms. Communicating with POE (Plain Old English) is considered obsolete in the modern-day quest to boost ARPU (Average Revenue Per User).

"The world is changing too rapidly for ordinary words to keep pace," said Lexi Kahn at the American Association Advocating Advanced Acronyms (AAAAA). She explained that the United States is now the world's number one exporter of WASTE -- Wordplay, Acronyms, Shortened Terms and Elisions.

"Many people overlook the role of acronyms in our modern economy," Kahn added. "We need to stop taking this resource for granted."

Cape Girardeau is no stranger to this trend. Several local startups are leveraging ABC (Acronym-Based Communications) in their marketing plans. Below are profiles of three of these ventures which aim to capture the FMA (First Mover Advantage) in their respective fields.

Artificial intelligence for highway design

Civil engineering will never be the same if Reginald "Red" Lyte has his way. The Cape Girardeau resident has founded a new consulting firm that uses artificial intelligence (AI) to propose solutions to thorny engineering problems. He calls his outfit ROUNDABOUTS, or Rapid Optimization Using Nimble Design Algorithms to Build Overall Useful Transportation Systems.

"We need to move beyond traditional highway designs," he said. "Diverging diamond interchanges are so last decade. Right now, our AI is putting the finishing touches on a new concept which we've dubbed the Dynamic Interchange Featuring Fully Integrated Central Urban Layout Technology. We think it will revolutionize major cities."

He joked, "It's an improvement on the first prototype, the Diverging Interchange Scheme Activating Suburban Traffic Exchange Routes. That was a DISASTER."

On a local level, Lyte hopes to tackle the I-55 Exit 93 project. "We fed the site geometry into our AI, and it produced the Continuous Highspeed Arterial Overpass Superstreet. I can't reveal much about it because we're working on a patent application, but let's just say it involves lots of roundabouts and U-turns.

Longer-term, the company hopes to pitch a design for the "Transamerica Corridor" that is proposed to pass through Cape Girardeau. "We want to use our AI to draft a 'hyperloop' system using pods and pressurized tubes to swiftly carry people, cars, fresh water and perhaps even LTRs (Lambert's Throwed Rolls) across the country."

Baseball fan training

Former major-league baseball scout Siera Babip spent his entire career evaluating prospective players. Then he realized that the industry is so focused on player development that it has missed out on a much larger realm: fan development.

"With all of the advanced stats that are being developed -- the geeks practically invent a new one during every commercial break -- it seems that ordinary fans are ill-equipped to watch the modern game," Babip said. "That's why I've launched a company that specializes in training fans in how to understand the world of sabermetrics. And if you've never heard of the term 'sabermetrics,' then do we have a program for you!"

His training program, called PASTIME (Providing Advanced Statistics Training to Increase MLB Enjoyment), will provide in-depth education on cutting-edge statistics. Some of the topics include:

YADI (Yet Another Defensive Index, a measure of a catcher's ability to throw out runners)

BGA/PA (Batting Glove Adjustments Per Plate Appearance, also known as the "Skip Schumaker Rate")

S3D+ (Sunflower Seed Spitting Distance Ballpark Adjusted)

SHAM (Sign-steals by Houston Astros Members)

wAC/K (Weighted Audible Cusses Per Strikeout)

The company also hopes to discover talented fans who can be recruited as prospects for the analytics departments of professional teams. Babip said, "To paraphrase Yogi Berra, 90% of baseball is half analytics."

Home entertainment consulting

It seems every media company under the sun is scrambling to launch their own streaming service. Local entrepreneur Sharon Sharkjumper wants to help make home entertainment simple again by offering a new service called the "Cord Cutting Content Concierge" (CCCC).

She explained, "Psychologists warn us about 'analysis paralysis' which causes anxiety in people who are overwhelmed by available options. We're working to eliminate that anxiety. Our service will conduct face-to-face (FTF) interviews with customers to determine their interests, and then put together a TIP, or Time Investment Plan, for how best to allocate their attention spans."

Sharkjumper pointed out that the FAANGs (Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Netflix, Google) have built automated systems to provide recommendations, but these pale in comparison to the quality of manually-crafted guides.

"Our job is to strip away the overburden to reveal the TV shows and movies that are actually worth watching. Life is too short for 'Dancing with the Masked Singers' or 'Saturday Night Recorded from a Previous Broadcast.'"