[Ads-l] Antedating of "App"

Shapiro, Fred fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU
Sun Jan 3 00:14:17 UTC 2016

The OED's first citation for _app_ 'application' is dated 1985.  The following item from the Web points out that this term appeared in job postings at least as far back as 1982:

RE: Comment by Thom_Holwerda<http://www.osnews.com/thread?478267>
by tupp<http://www.osnews.com/user/tupp> on Wed 22nd Jun 2011 20:37 UTC in reply to "Comment by Thom_Holwerda<http://www.osnews.com/thread?478252>"
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Here is page 112, from Computerworld Sep 13, 1982: http://books.google.com/books?id=69kEbmHHmggC&pg=RA1-PA112&dq=apps&...<http://books.google.com/books?id=69kEbmHHmggC&pg=RA1-PA112&dq=apps&hl=en&ei=kEwCTtiBLcPWiALCtp2nCA&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CEUQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q=apps&f=false>

If you look carefully, you will see three job listings with the word "apps" highlighted in yellow. One is in the "SYS MANAGER" listing for Hartford. Another is in the "IMS PROG LEADER" listing for Boston. The third one is in the "BURROUGHS 6800 P/A" listing for Providence.

In September of 1982, the term "apps" was widely used to describe computer applications, with no reference to Apple computer.

Thom Holwerda has further traced "app" back to job postings in Computerworld, June 8, 1981.

Fred Shapiro

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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