WsOTY? ... "to ping" (and definition)

Joel S. Berson Berson at ATT.NET
Sun Mar 16 19:33:56 UTC 2014

Wilson has the origin, although I think the definition he cited is
slightly inaccurate.  Not "(check for the presence of) another party
on the *line*" but "a (particular) party on the *network*".  (I think
the normal response to "ping" is simply "I'm here", and a
communications connection is not opened.)

In the case of the Malaysia Air plane, users of "ping" seem to mean
"an attempt to establish a (two-party, client-server) connection."

Trying to translate the newspaper/TV language into standardese, it
sounds like the plane sent an "open connection" message, the
satellite responded, but the plane did not then send any data
messages over the connection.

P.S.  Two on-line headline speculations at the moment --

Ocean Off Perth Called Diverted Malaysian Plane's Most Likely Last Position
Missing Airliner Apparently Flew to Central Asia.

These are two points on the concentric circles determined from the
pinging.  Only about 5000 miles from each other, plus or minus a few thousand.


At 3/15/2014 11:31 PM, Wilson Gray wrote:
>As a verb, _ping_ means "to get the attention of" or "to check for the
>presence of" another party on line. The computer acronym (for Packet
>Internet or Inter-Network Groper) was contrived to match the submariners'
>term for the sound of a returned sonar pulse.
>What is _ping_? - Definition from -

The American Dialect Society -

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