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66

EDIT: Answer from Professor Guibas: from Leonidas Guibas guibas@cs.stanford.edu to of the "Red-Black" term mailed-by cs.stanford.edu hide details 16:16 (0 minutes ago) we had red and black pens for drawing the trees. I believe the term first appeared in "A dichromatic framework for balanced trees" from Leonidas J. Guibas and Robert ...


54

I took a very pleasant tour through w3c, google and wikipedia and finally found the answer: an annotated XML spec where we find an excerpt of an email from the inventor of the name, James Clark, an Email from chairman Jon Bosak who suggested to use the X letter, some other ideas for names and the final votes: Votes Acronym Full Name 5 XML Extensible ...


28

Well, my guess would be order, which coincides with wikipedia. Edit: (my own (any improvements appreciated)) translation from the German wikipedia article The capital letter O (actually a capital omicron at the time) as a symbol for the order of (German: "Ordnung von") was first used by the German number theorist Paul Bachman in the second issue of ...


25

Because "X" is just so much cooler than "E". Also presumably to avoid confusion with things like Extensible ML.


23

I think the term "production" has come from other industries like automotive or electronics, where once a component/product is ready to be used, it becomes part of producing/usage in something bigger like in a "production line" or "construction pipeline". In software the term "production environment" might hold parallel in the sense that people use this ...


22

SEQUEL = Structured English QUEry Language. For a good historical perspective read Don Chamberlin: ...A bunch of things were happening at about this time that I think we ought to mention just in passing. One was that we had to change the name of our language from SEQUEL to SQL. And the reason that we had to do that was because of a legal challenge ...


19

It started out as meaning something like "An ordered list of things to happen- a plan or a scheme." That fit with the things computer scientists were making- a list of commands, a plan of action, so they started calling the things they were making "programs." Older etymology: 1630s, "public notice," from L.L. programma "proclamation, edict," from Gk. ...


18

Language agnostic refers to aspects of programming that are independent of any specific programming language. At least, that's how I've heard it used for the last thirty years. The world "agnostic" is derived from the ancient Greek for "don't know". So something which is "language agnostic" doesn't need to know about computer languages; it means the same ...


17

tl;dr "Foo" and "bar" as metasyntactic variables were popularised by MIT and DEC, the first references are in work on LISP and PDP-1 and Project MAC from 1964 onwards. Many of these people were in MIT's Tech Model Railroad Club, where we find the first documented use of "foo" in tech circles in 1959 (and a variant in 1958). Both "foo" and "bar" (and even ...


16

It makes sense in the context of compiled binaries. Code is transformed from source to a target (e.g. an executable, or a dll library, etc). Source code is generally the original part of software created by humans, not generated by other software (although some tools do generate "source"). If you have an application you have the binary byte code of the ...


14

The term dates back to the time when the field was known as "Data Processing." Back then, users did not perform their own data entry. Instead, they filled out coding sheets that were punched onto decks of punch-cards by data entry personnel. These card decks were physically queued up for processing by a person known as the "production scheduler." All ...


14

Way back in the dark ages of computing, source statements were punched on cards. The computer would compile the source statements, and punch the object instructions on cards. Back then, cards were relatively cheap and disk space was expensive. If I remember correctly, a single disk for an IBM 1130, the IBM 2315 Disk Cartridge, roughly as large as a ...


14

"Big" means "capital", and "O" means order, as in "order of complexity". So named because of the convention of writing "order of complexity" as O(f(x)), e.g., with a capital letter 'O', or a 'Big O'. Nobody talks about it much because 'everyone' understands what it means, and understanding it doesn't really help you understand complexity analysis. For ...


14

APL (and derivatives such as J) have boxing. J has two monadic operators < and > called 'enclose'/'box', and 'disclose'/'unbox'. I'm not sure when it was introduced. Usenet is often a good place to find things like this: Here is a reference to boxing in Prolog from 1988. Here is a reference to boxing in Lisp from 1984. Everything prior to this ...


13

To quote Wikipedia on this: SQL was adopted as a standard by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) in 1986 as SQL-86[19] and International Organization for Standardization (ISO) in 1987. The original SQL standard declared that the official pronunciation for SQL is "es queue el".2 Many English-speaking database professionals still use the ...


12

Not a complete answer, but the use of string to mean "a number of objects arranged in a line" was already around in the late 1400s. Source This is essentially the same usage.


11

From the book Computers & Society The X in XML "XML is both a boon and a threat to the web dream." The X in XML stands for eXtensible. This signifies that XML is open. It is open in the sense that it allows growth. Note that the abbreviation is XML and not EML. There is something daring, attractive, exciting about that X. X ...


8

S. Lott really hit the nail on the head but unfortunately only posted a comment. The nuance that people seem to be missing here is that the word production does not refer to the state of the software itself but how the software is being used. You might have the exact same build of the software, byte-for-byte, running in production and testing environments. ...


8

As opposed to _s which commonly denotes C structs I always envisioned _t to stand for typedefs.


7

From Wikipedia: The origins of the terms are not known with certainty, and several anecdotal theories have been advanced to identify them. Foobar may have derived from the military acronym FUBAR and gained popularity due to the fact that it is pronounced the same. In this meaning it also can derive from the German word furchtbar, which means awful and ...


7

A proxy, in its most general form, is a class functioning as an interface to something else. The proxy could interface to anything: a network connection, a large object in memory, a file, or some other resource that is expensive or impossible to duplicate. - Wikipedia In the very context you quote, it means that said methods serve to ...


7

Glitch came into computing from the hardware side. In hardware, it has a pretty well defined meaning -- a short-term, unexpected change in the state of a signal. This can happen for a number of different reasons, including noise such as from a nearby radio transmitter or static discharge, or defective design such as not taking propagation delays into ...


7

Object code is sometimes also called target code, because it is the target result of the translation process performed by compilers. So "object code" is used as an opposite of "source code". There are other strange names in the compiler world: for example, the segment of the file with the binary code of your program is often called "the text segment".


7

It is object as in "objective". Not object as a "thing". Similar to dasblinkenlight's answer about being called "target code". It is the target or objective of the compiler.


6

To expand on Gilbert Le Blanc's interesting answer about the dark ages of computing when source statements (the source code) were punched on cards, around 1970: I've found even earlier references to "source code" in the context of IBM's punched cards, dating back to the late fifties, and from a number of diverse applications using early machine processing: ...


5

I think it is an abbreviation of "production environment". For enterprise apps, there is development environment and production environment. The latter is where the real, live company processes are run. So when you deploy stuff there, it is live, and any mistake costs hard cash. (There may also be test environment(s), and a staging environment, which is ...


5

The term late or dynamic binding describes how the identifier is resolved into the actual implementation of the method, it doesn't describe how the virtual method is used. If any of those would have been used to describe the method, something like late-bound or dynamically-bound would have been used, which is not only long-winded, but also a bit too close to ...



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