[Haskell-cafe] Who started 42, and when?

Christopher L Conway cconway at cs.nyu.edu
Fri Feb 1 09:18:50 EST 2008


This is not unique to the Haskell community. I suspect the arbitrary
constant 42 has been appearing unexplained in research papers for as
long as there have been computer scientists who were sci-fi geeks
(absolutely no offense intended to geeks ;-). It would be very
difficult indeed to figure out who did this first, without some highly
dedicated library research.


On Feb 1, 2008 9:03 AM, Loup Vaillant <loup.vaillant at gmail.com> wrote:
> I have read quite a lot of Haskell papers, lately, and noticed that
> the number 42 appeared quite often, in informal tutorials as well as
> in very serious research papers. No wonder Haskell is the Answer to
> The Great Question of Life, The Universe, and Everything, but I would
> like to know who started this, and when.
> Google wasn't much help, and I can't believe it's coincidence --hence
> this email. I hope I didn't opened some Pandora box. :-)
> Cheers,
> Loup
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