about logo (The Beasdie question)

Peter Ulrich Kruppa root at pukruppa.de
Sun Feb 1 04:10:04 PST 2004

On Sat, 31 Jan 2004, Mark Terribile wrote:

> Bubble Gum <pldsoftlist at yahoo.com> wrote:
> >> I just want to ask (i'm sorry if it's a silly question),why freebsd
> >> logo use "devil" character?
> Answered by Paul A. Hoadley and Peter Ulrich Kruppa:
> >It's not a devil.  It's a daemon.
>   =======
> > 1) It isn't a devil but a small daemon, ... programs called daemons,  ...
> > 2) [It's] name is beastie, ... a quasihomophone to BSD ...
> > 3) On http://www.freebsdmall.com you can buy Tee-shirts, ...
> As a recent member of OOOF (The Organization of Obsolete Old Fogies) I was
> there (well, nearby) when it happened.
> [...]
> Backstory on `demon/daemon': In pre-Christian (ie. Greek) thinking, a
> daemon was a spirit, neither angelic nor diabolical, which took care of
> something, someone, or someplace.  (This was education by osmosis, so feel
> free to correct me.)  In Plato's _The Death of Socrates_ (or _Last Days of
> Socrates_, or ...)
>you can read Socrates speculation on the hereafter, and
> of a guide spirit that he expects will be there to greet him.
Dualism was Plato's fundamental or general view of the
world. The idea to reduce this view to the dualism of good and
evil seems to come from Zarathustra (Zoroaster) who
lived sometime between 1000 and 500 a.C. .
This thought was picked up by another Persian called Mani (around
250 p.C.) and integrated into the christian religion to prevent a
schisma ... and this is all a terrible simplification.

> As to the name: it's my speculation that, when Christianity
> came along, the world got divided into the divine and angelic
> .vs. the diabolical, with us in the middle, and anything that
> was neither divine nor angelic nor human had to be diabolical.
> So over time, and probably through forgetting and rediscovery
> of the word, the helpful or friendly or simply neutral daemon
> became the demon.
I am afraid it was always a principle of religious mission to
make all kinds of local gods and daemons personifications of the
evil (--> Baal, Lucifer, Pan).

> I don't know if Ritchie or Thompson were the first to use the name for a
> computer service.  It seems likely that at least one of them was overeducated.
> So no, there is nothing diabolical about FreeBSD, unlike a certain `32 bit
> extension to a 16 bit kluge on an eight-bit operating system for a four-bit
> microprocessor written by a two-bit company that can't stand one bit of
> competition.'
> May we never forget the ``story'' in History.
My favourite literaric extension of this theme is found in Marcel
Proust's "A la Recherche du Temps Perdu" .


P.S.: 	Please ignore this OT. I am just hanging around at home
	with some kind of Influenza.

>          Mark Terribile

	|    Peter Ulrich Kruppa    |
        |         Wuppertal         |
        |          Germany          |

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