THE computer industry has a long and proud history of contributing senseless and needless initials and acronyms to our long-suffering language. Anyone who can read BYTE magazine cover-to-cover and understand every bit of it probably understands more computer jargon than the average person understands actual words. And a joy it is, too, skimming through pages littered with gems such as WANs, LANs and LONs, to say nothing of the classics, such as UNIX, XENIX and POSIX. But the evil mind which spawned the absolutely impenetrable PCMCIA has taken things too far. The term is used to describe those nifty little credit-sized ROM and RAM cards (two more acronym classics that have entered the language). These cards look like becoming standard personal computing features, which, unfortunately, means users are going tohave to get used to the PCMCIA tongue-twister. For those who don't know what PCMCIA stands for (that is, most of the computing population), Compaq Computer's pen-based systems director Steve Malisewski offers the following. From now on, PCMCIA stands for ''People Can't Memorise Computing Industry Acronyms''. This seems to me to be a lot easier to remember than Personal Computer Memory Card International Association. Now, if only we could all just agree on a way to pronounce PCMCIA without causing ourselves an injury. SCHOOL children generally take to computing like ducks to water, so we guess AT & T's plan to link 20 Hongkong high schools to a worldwide network of their peers should go down a treat. AT & T EasyLink Services said last week it would donate the communications software and electronic mail services to put Hongkong schools on the company's global Learning Network. The network will let local students ''discuss'' their work with contemporaries in more than 35 countries via electronic mail. If the world truly is turning digital, and if we really are eventually going to have access to everything on-line, it would seem as good a time as any to put the classroom on-line, too. The initiative is to be supported by the Hutchison-AT & T Network Services joint-venture. MORE on Compu-Speak. In the United States, we hear that Sun Microsystems is inventing a new language all of its own. The company apparently told 40 of its employees that their ''skill sets no longer match the company's core competencies and product strategies''. Huh? The translation: You're fired. The inference: And it's your fault. One employee described the notice as ''complete doublespeak'', and that the company simply wanted to avoid using the word fired. Slightly more disarming is the statement by a company spokesman that the lay-offs reflect Sun's belief that an employee's ''skill set'' becomes obsolete at the rate of 20 per cent per year. This must give the employees remaining at Sun an overwhelming sense of security.