Uncle Hyena (unclehyena) wrote,
Uncle Hyena
unclehyena

Alan and Henry

Today is Alan Turing's birthday. Drink a toast to him if computers mean ANYTHING positive in your life.

Yesterday, if you had asked me to take a guess at the etymology of "Shrapnel", I would have said it was probably a descriptive word borrowed from French or German. I would have been wrong. It turns out that Henry Shrapnel (1761-1842) was a British officer who invented the "spherical case" artillery shell, a sort of long range anti-personnel weapon. It had simply never occurred to me that "Shrapnel" might be a man's name, and it tickles me to find out otherwise.

Uncle Hyena
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