Antedating of "Hacker"

Imran Ghory imran at BITS.BRIS.AC.UK
Fri Jun 13 18:27:38 UTC 2003

On Fri, 13 Jun 2003, Fred Shapiro wrote:
> The word "hacker" in its well-known computing sense has a first citation
> of 1971 (contributed by me) in the Historical Dictionary of American
> Slang.  Here is an earlier citation, not precisely in a computing context
> but obviously the same term:
> 1963 _The Tech_ (MIT student newspaper) 20 Nov. 1  Many telephone services

This seems to back-up (partially at least) the anecdotal claim in the New
Hacker's Dictionary that,

"This term seems to have been first adopted as a badge in the 1960s by the
hacker culture surrounding TMRC and the MIT AI Lab. We have a report that
it was used in a sense close to this entry's by teenage radio hams and
electronics tinkerers in the mid-1950s."

Imran Ghory

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