austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,

I guess I'm just going mad, still something's to come

Belated realizations department: it was only in fishing around for commands to try out in xkcd's little command-line game for April Fool's Day that I started to wonder whether the Official Command Line Web Broswer, lynx, might have got its name partly for the pun and partly as an extension of other animal-themed commands such as gopher and cat. I know that this occurred to everyone else many, many years ago, possibly when they still thought about such things as lynx, but it's a revelation to me.

I also only just thought of how pine and tar could conceivably be the result of a similar word-association naming scheme. Yeah, they have even less in common purpose than do lynx and gopher, but whoever came up with whatever came second (I suppose pine) could have had the earlier command in mind. Now it's left me wondering about all sorts of subtle connections between Unix command names.

Trivia: In the Cursus Mathematicus by Pierre Hérigone in 1634/1644, a new set of notations for greater than, equal to, and less than were proposed: ``3|2'' for ``greater than''; ``2|2'' for ``equal to''; and ``2|3'' for ``less than''. Source: A History Of Mathematical Notations, Florian Cajori.

Currently Reading: Why We Buy: The Science Of Shopping, Paco Underhill. Boy, on the one hand, I really want to like the guy for his persistent and endless belief that shopping should be a more enjoyable experience, especially in little things like, have clean bathrooms, comfortable places for people to sit, and make sure the aisles are wide enough that people can easily navigate them. On the other hand, a lot of his attention is put on how to make everything more plastered with advertisements. Everywhere.


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