Shibboleet

By 2010.10.16 tags: , , . Comment»

Funny ’cause it’s too true, the latest xkcd, “Tech Support:”

Wondering about “Shibboleet”? So was I. The answer comes from the CSMonitor.com, “Shibboleet: XKCD’s clever code word explained:”

“Leet” (more often “1337”) is half-joking hacker code for elite, or skilled. A leet programmer or gamer is at the top of her game.

“Shibboleth” comes from the Bible. It’s the Hebrew word for an ear of corn, but requires a true native accent to pronounce properly. Because the word was so difficult for foreigners to say, shibboleth became a code word for early Israelites, a dead giveaway that someone was an interloper. Now, shibboleth is a catchall term for any custom or belief that sets one group of people apart from another.

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