1. n. Equipment or program that fails, usually intermittently.
2. BAGBITING: adj. Failing hardware or software. "This bagbiting system won't let me get out of spacewar." Usage: verges on obscenity. Grammatically separable; one may speak of "biting the bag". Synonyms: LOSER, LOSING, CRETINOUS, BLETCHEROUS, BARFUCIOUS, CHOMPER, CHOMPING.
(1) Any program that is less than full-blown. A baby word processor would be a program that does just the bare essentials. (Apples obsolete TeachText was a baby word processor.)
(2) A hardware device that is smaller than normal.
n. Common alternate name for EXCL (q.v.), especially at CMU. See SHRIEK
Cache memory; a section of memory not normally used that is utilized for high speed operations in certain programs. [From "databank;" I think this word has been replaced by the term "cache."]
1. The second metasyntactic variable, after FOO. "Suppose we have two functions FOO and BAR. FOO calls BAR..."
2. Often appended to FOO to produce FOOBAR.
[from the "layman" slang, meaning "vomit"]
1. ib42rj. Term of disgust. See BLETCH.
2. v. Choke, as on input. May mean to give an error message. "The function `=' compares two fixnums or two flonums, and barfs on anything else."
3. BARFULOUS, BARFUCIOUS: adj. Said of something which would make anyone barf, if only for aesthetic reasons.
BELLS AND WHISTLES
n. Unnecessary but useful (or amusing) features of a program. "Now that we've got the basic program working, let's go back and add some bells and whistles." Nobody seems to know what distinguishes a bell from a whistle.
[from Macsyma] n.
1. In backgammon, large numbers on the dice.
2. Multiple-precision (sometimes infinitely extendable) integers and, through analogy, any very large numbers.
3. EL CAMINO BIGNUM: El Camino Real, a street through the San Francisco peninsula that originally extended (and still appears in places) all the way to Mexico City. It was termed "El Camino Double Precision" when someone noted it was a very long street, and then "El Camino Bignum" when it was pointed out that it was hundreds of miles long.
[short for BINARY; used as a second file name on ITS]
2. BIN FILE: A file containing the BIN for a program. Usage: used at MIT, which runs on ITS. The equivalent term at Stanford is DMP (pronounced "dump") FILE. Other names used include SAV ("save") FILE (DEC and Tenex), SHR ("share") and LOW FILES (DEC), and EXE ("ex'ee") FILE (DEC and Twenex). Also in this category are the input files to the various flavors of linking loaders (LOADER, LINK-10, STINK), called REL FILES.
n. The object code for a program.
n. 1. The unit of information; the amount of information obtained by asking a yes-or-no question. "Bits" is often used simply to mean information, as in "Give me bits about DPL replicators".
2. [By extension from "interrupt bits" on a computer] A reminder that something should be done or talked about eventually. Upon seeing someone that you haven't talked to for a while, it's common for one or both to say, "I have a bit set for you."
1. v. To perform a complex operation on a large block of bits, usually involving the bits being displayed on a bitmapped raster screen. See BLT.
2. n. The operation itself.
n. 1. A receptacle used to hold the runoff from the computer's shift registers.
2. Mythical destination of deleted files, GC'ed memory, and other no-longer-accessible data.
3. The physical device associated with "NUL:".
[from German "brechen", to vomit (?)]
1. interj. Term of disgust.
2. BLETCHEROUS: adj. Disgusting in design or function. "This keyboard is bletcherous!" Usage: slightly comic.
BLT (blit, very rarely belt)
[based on the PDP-10 block transfer instruction; confusing to users of the PDP-11]
1. v. To transfer a large contiguous package of information from one place to another.
2. THE BIG BLT: n. Shuffling operation on the PDP-10 under some operating systems that consumes a significant amount of computer time.
3. (usually pronounced B-L-T) n. Sandwich containing bacon, lettuce, and tomato.
n. The degree to which something is BOGUS (q.v.). At CMU, bogosity is measured with a bogometer; typical use: in a seminar, when a speaker says something bogus, a listener might raise his hand and say, "My bogometer just triggered." The agreed-upon unit of bogosity is the microLenat (uL).
(WPI, Yale, Stanford) adj.
1. Non-functional. "Your patches are bogus."
2. Useless. "OPCON is a bogus program."
3. False. "Your arguments are bogus."
4. Incorrect. "That algorithm is bogus."
5. Silly. "Stop writing those bogus sagas." (This word seems to have some, but not all, of the connotations of RANDOM.) [Etymological note from Lehman/Reid at CMU: "Bogus" was originally used (in this sense) at Princeton, in the late 60's. It was used not particularly in the CS department, but all over campus. It came to Yale, where one of us (Lehman) was an undergraduate, and (we assume) elsewhere through the efforts of Princeton alumni who brought the word with them from their alma mater. In the Yale case, the alumnus is Michael Shamos, who was a graduate student at Yale and is now a faculty member here. A glossary of bogus words was compiled at Yale when the word was first popularized (e.g., autobogophobia: the fear of becoming bogotified).]
(Stanford) v. To play volleyball. "Bounce, bounce! Stop wasting time on the computer and get out to the court!"
[generalization of "Honeywell Brain Damage" (HBD), a theoretical disease invented to explain certain utter cretinisms in Multics] adj. Obviously wrong; cretinous; demented. There is an implication that the person responsible must have suffered brain damage, because he should have known better. Calling something brain-damaged is really bad; it also implies it is unusable.
v. 1. To cause to be broken (in any sense). "Your latest patch to the system broke the TELNET server."
2. (of a program) To stop temporarily, so that it may be examined for debugging purposes. The place where it stops is a BREAKPOINT.
adj. 1. Not working properly (of programs).
2. Behaving strangely; especially (of people), exhibiting extreme depression.
[by analogy with "bracket": a "broken bracket"] (primarily Stanford) n. Either of the characters "<" and ">". (At MIT, and apparently in The Real World (q.v.) as well, these are usually called ANGLE BRACKETS.)
(primarily Stanford) n. The bits produced by the CTRL and META shift keys on a Stanford (or Knight) keyboard. Rumor has it that the idea for extra bits for characters came from Niklaus Wirth, and that his nickname was `Bucky'. DOUBLE BUCKY: adj. Using both the CTRL and META keys. "The command to burn all LEDs is double bucky F."
[from telephone terminology, "bugs in a telephone cable", blamed for noisy lines; however, Jean Sammet has repeatedly been heard to claim that the use of the term in CS comes from a story concerning actual bugs found wedged in an early malfunctioning computer] n. An unwanted and unintended property of a program. (People can have bugs too (even winners) as in "PHW is a super winner, but he has some bugs.") See FEATURE.
1. v. To make highly efficient, either in time or space, often at the expense of clarity. The object of the verb is usually what was removed ("I managed to bum three more instructions.") but can be the program being changed ("I bummed the inner loop down to seven microseconds.")
2. n. A small change to an algorithm to make it more efficient.
v. To run in a very tight loop, perhaps without guarantee of getting out.