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October 11th, 2007

Today’s Lesson: Slashes

This is a forward slash (aka, just “slash”): /

And this is backslash: \

URLs do not have backslashes in them. So, if you’re verbally reciting a URL to someone, don’t say “blahblah dot com backslash index dot h-t-m-l.”

And while I’m at it, when you’re telling someone a URL, you don’t need to preface it with “h-t-t-p colon slash slash w w w dot.” And you definitely don’t need to say “h-t-t-p colon backslash backslash…”

Posted in Technology

Mike October 12, 2007, 12:44 pm

I acknowledge that this is what they’re called officially, but I’ve always disagreed that they were named this way. On a page, I start reading at the top left, reading down and to the right…therefore \ is going forwards both top-to-bottom and left to right. And / is a backslash in a top-to-bottom view, but a forward slash in a left-to-right view.

So, using a top-to-bottom, left-to-right reading view, in 3 out of the 4 ways we could look at these characters they are named counterintuitive to me, with only / being ‘properly’ called a forward slash in the left-to-right school of thought.

So anytime I need to refer to one of these marks when speaking, I have to pause and think the opposite of what my instincts want to call them. It’s a tough life…

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