I've just discovered a great blog: orgtheory.net. The whole "academia" category makes for interesting reading. But graduate students will particularly like the "Grad Skool Rulz" by Fabio Rojas. There are 13 so far, with such topics as "writing your [bleep] dissertation " (he used characters in the title that won't allow me to hyperlink; hence the "bleep") and "learn the unspoken rules," these "Rulz" offer insights that you don't usually read in the official university manuals. So far the Rulz haven't been given their own category, so your best bet to locate them all is to go to the blog and search "Grad Skool Rulz #." This will give you just the Rulz posts and not mentions of them.
I thought I knew what the definition of ABD was. It was exactly the same as defined here in Carnegie Mellon's University Doctoral Candidate Policies for All But Dissertation (ABD) : After the completion of all formal degree requirements other than the completion of and approval of the doctoral dissertation and the public final examination, doctoral candidates shall be regarded as All But Dissertation(ABD). I have, though, occasionally run into the term ABD being used as a somewhat disparaging designation for one who fulfills the formal degree requirements of the Ph.D. but never finishes the dissertation, and then quits the program. Most recently, I saw it in What They Didn' t Teach You in Graduate School: 199 Helpful Hints for Success in Your Academic Career , by Paul Gray and David E. Drew. Number 9 of their helpful hints is one that I strongly agree with: "Remember that a Ph.D. is primarily an indication of survivorship." They go on to say, "You stuck w