Numeric zero, as opposed to the letter `O' (the 15th letter of the English alphabet). In their unmodified forms they look a lot alike, and various kluges invented to make them visually distinct have compounded the confusion. If your zero is center-dotted and letter-O is not, or if letter-O looks almost rectangular but zero looks more like an American football stood on end (or the reverse), you're probably looking at a modern character display (though the dotted zero seems to have originated as an option on IBM 3270 controllers). If your zero is slashed but letter-O is not, you're probably looking at an old-style ASCII graphic set descended from the default typewheel on the venerable ASR-33 Teletype (Scandinavians, for whom Ø is a letter, curse this arrangement). (Interestingly, the slashed zero long predates computers; Florian Cajori's monumental "A History of Mathematical Notations" notes that it was used in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries.) If letter-O has a slash across it and the zero does not, your display is tuned for a very old convention used at IBM and a few other early mainframe makers (Scandinavians curse this arrangement even more, because it means two of their letters collide). Some Burroughs/Unisys equipment displays a zero with a reversed slash. Old CDC computers rendered letter O as an unbroken oval and 0 as an oval broken at upper right and lower left. And yet another convention common on early line printers left zero unornamented but added a tail or hook to the letter-O so that it resembled an inverted Q or cursive capital letter-O (this was endorsed by a draft ANSI standard for how to draw ASCII characters, but the final standard changed the distinguisher to a tick-mark in the upper-left corner). Are we sufficiently confused yet?, Previous:0
1TBS // n.
The "One True Brace Style"; see indent style
120 reset /wuhn-twen'tee ree'set/ n.
[from 120 volts, U.S. wall voltage] To cycle power on a machine in order to reset or unjam it. Compare Big Red Switch, power cycle.
In translation software written by hackers, infix 2 often represents the syllable to with the connotation `translate to': as in dvi2ps (DVI to PostScript), int2string (integer to string), and texi2roff (Texinfo to [nt]roff). Several versions of a joke have floated around the internet in which some idiot programmer fixes the Y2K bug by changing all the Y's in something to K's, as in Januark, Februark, etc.
404 // n.
[from the HTTP error "file not found on server"] Extended to humans to convey that the subject has no idea or no clue - sapience not found. May be used reflexively; "Uh, I'm 404ing" means "I'm drawing a blank".
404 compliant adj.
The status of a website which has been completely removed, usually by the administrators of the hosting site as a result of net abuse by the website operators. The term is a tongue-in-cheek reference to the standard "301 compliant" Murkowski Bill disclaimer used by spammers. See also: spam, spamvertize.
4.2 /for' poynt too'/ n.
Without a prefix, this almost invariably refers to BSD Unix release 4.2. Note that it is an indication of cluelessness to say "version 4.2", and "release 4.2" is rare; the number stands on its own, or is used in the more explicit forms 4.2BSD or (less commonly) BSD 4.2. Similar remarks apply to "4.3", "4.4" and to earlier, less-widespread releases 4.1 and 2.9.
@-party /at'par`tee/ n.
[from the @-sign in an Internet address] (alt. `@-sign party' /at'si:n par`tee/) A semi-closed party thrown for hackers at a science-fiction convention (esp. the annual World Science Fiction Convention or "Worldcon"); one must have a network address to get in, or at least be in company with someone who does. One of the most reliable opportunities for hackers to meet face to face with people who might otherwise be represented by mere phosphor dots on their screens. Compare boink.
The first recorded @-party was held at the Westercon (a U.S. western regional SF convention) over the July 4th weekend in 1980. It is not clear exactly when the canonical @-party venue shifted to the Worldcon but it had certainly become established by Constellation in 1983. Sadly, the @-party tradition has been in decline since about 1996, mainly because having an @-address no longer functions as an effective lodge pin.Return to