Defenestration

From Academic Kids

Defenestration is also the name of an all-women band; see Defenestration (band).


Defenestration (Latin, de ("from; out of") + fenestra ("window")) is the act of throwing someone or something out of a window. Historically, it was used as an act of political dissent, notably the Defenestrations of Prague. The Bohemian rebels inspired some Philadelphia anarchists to publish a newspaper: the defenestrator (http://www.defenestrator.org), a journal of hope and refusal.

Some meanings from the Free On-line Dictionary of Computing (FOLDOC) are:

  • Proper karmic retribution for an incorrigible punster. "Oh, god, that was awful!" "Quick! Defenestrate him!"
  • The act of exiting a computer windowing system in order to get better response time from a full-screen program.
  • The act of discarding something under the assumption that it will improve matters. "I don't have any disk space left." "Well, why don't you defenestrate that 100 megs worth of old core dumps?"
  • Under a GUI, the act of dragging something out of a window (onto the screen). "Next, defenestrate the MugWump icon."

Another meaning is the use of an ejection seat in an aircraft, amusingly referenced in the Tom Tom Club song Booming and Zooming.

More recently, the term 'defenestration' has been used for the act of removing Microsoft Windows from a PC to replace it with an alternative operating system such as Linux.

This article was originally based on material from the Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, which is licensed under the GFDL.
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