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Chad (paper)

From Academic Kids

(Redirected from Hanging chad)

Chads are paper particles created when holes are made in a computer punched tape or punch card.

Chads were made famous in the highly contentious 2000 presidential election in the United States, where a majority in the U.S. Electoral College was determined in Florida by the counting of punch card ballots. Voters leaving incompletely-punched holes resulted in so-called hanging chads where one or two corners were still attached, or dimpled chads (also known as pregnant chads) where three or four corners were still attached.

Chads are actually a normally more mundane and everyday occurrence, every time a person uses a hole punch of any functional or decorative sort produces the paper displaced by the punch - a chad. Chads are also common in any store, where the holes are punched so that merchandise can be hung on pegs or clip strips.

Likewise, chads can also be the result of punching holes in any sort of thin material, such as fabric, plastic, or even sheet metal.

Etymology

The origin of the term chad, which first appeared in 1947, is uncertain. The term chad predates the Chadless punch which makes a U-shaped hole and folds the paper rather than punching it out entirely. It is more likely from the Scottish name for river gravel, chad, or the British slang for louse, chat.

See also

External links

  • Snopes Urban Legend (http://www.snopes.com/business/names/chad.asp) - Debunking the Chadless keypunch etymology
  • Word Detective (http://www.word-detective.com/112700.html) - on Chad
  • BBC News (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/1055649.stm) - on Chads
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