[TUHS] Origin of "bug" (was: Grace Hopper)
Greg 'groggy' Lehey
grog at lemis.com
Sun Dec 10 09:41:17 AEST 2017
On Sunday, 10 December 2017 at 10:17:54 +1100, Dave Horsfall wrote:
> On Sat, 9 Dec 2017, arnold at skeeve.com wrote:
>>> She coined the term "debugging" when she extracted a moth from a set of
>>> relay contacts from a computer (the Harvard Mk I) and wrote "computer
>>> debugged" in the log, taping the deceased Lepidoptera in there as well.
>> See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Debugging#Origin_of_the_term which
>> indicates that "bug" and "debugging" had been around as technical terms
>> long before that incident.
> I need to investigate that further (I'd hate to spread misinformation,
> which is why I enjoy being corrected, esp. in public).
I was going to pipe up here, but I wasn't sure if it would be
interesting. The Oxford English Dictionary has a first reference to
in this sense in 1875:
5. orig. U.S.
a. A defect or fault in a machine (esp. an electrical or electronic
one), or in a process, etc.
1875 Operator 15 Aug. 5/1 The biggest âbugâ yet has been discovered
in the U.S. Hotel Electric Annunciator.
1889 Pall Mall Gaz. 11 Mar. 1/1 Mr. Edison, I was informed, had
been up the two previous nights discovering âa bugâ in his
phonographâan expression for solving a difficulty, and
implying that some imaginary insect has secreted itself inside
and is causing all the trouble.
Grace Hopper's bug doesn't get a mention.
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