Han character


(From the Han dynasty, 206 B.C.E to 25 C.E.) One of the set of glyphs common to Chinese (where they are called "hanzi"), Japanese (where they are called kanji), and Korean (where they are called hanja).

Han characters are generally described as "ideographic", i.e., picture-writing; but see the reference below.

Modern Korean, Chinese and Japanese fonts may represent a given Han character as somewhat different glyphs. However, in the formulation of Unicode, these differences were folded, in order to conserve the number of code positions necessary for all of CJK. This unification is referred to as "Han Unification", with the resulting character repertoire sometimes referred to as "Unihan".

Unihan reference at the Unicode Consortium.

[John DeFrancis, "The Chinese Language: Fact and Fantasy", University of Hawaii Press, 1984].

Last updated: 1998-10-18



Have A Nice Day. Often used sarcastically and in connection with HTH, as in:

  > Where's the point of alt.stupidity?

  Between the 't' and the 's'.  HTH.  HAND.

Last updated: 1998-03-06

hand cruft


(After "hand craft") To write something by hand that would be better done automatically, e.g. writing assembly language instead of using a compiler (see hand hacking).

[Jargon File]

Last updated: 2006-01-19



An imperative language with primitives for controlling parallel programs.

Used by Wayne Luk for work in compilation of programs to hardware (FPGAs).

Last updated: 1995-02-28

hand hack


1. (Or "hand cruft") To Translate a hot spot of a program in a HLL into assembly language by hand, as opposed to trying to coerce the compiler into generating better code. Both the term and the practice are becoming uncommon.

See tune, bum.

2. More generally, manual construction or patching of data sets that would normally be generated by a translation utility and interpreted by another program, and aren't really designed to be read or modified by humans.

[Jargon File]

Last updated: 1995-02-16

Hand-held Personal Computer



<programming, operating system>

1. A simple item of data that identifies a resource. For example, a Unix file handle identifies an open file and associated data such as whether it was opened for read or write and the current read/write position. On the Macintosh, a handle is a pointer to a pointer to some dynamically-allocated memory. The extra level of indirection allows on-the-fly memory compaction or garbage collection without invalidating application program references to the allocated memory.


2. An alias used intended to conceal a user's true identity in an electronic message. The term is common on Citizen's Band and other amateur radio but, in that context usually means the user's real name as FCC rules forbid concealing one's identity.

Use of grandiose handles is characteristic of crackers, weenies, spods, and other lower forms of network life; true hackers travel on their own reputations.

Compare nick.

[Jargon File]


3. domain handle.

Last updated: 2004-07-20





(HO, or "handoff") the mechanism by which an on-going cellular connection between a mobile terminal (MT, typically a mobile phone) or mobile host (MH) and a corresponding terminal or host is transferred from one point of access of the fixed network to another.

Handover may occur because the phone is leaving its current cell, to balance demand between cells, to reduce interference or to transfer a user who has stopped moving to a nearby cell with shorter range.

Last updated: 2010-05-07



(From mainstream slang "hand-rolled cigarette" in opposition to "ready-made") To perform a normally automated software installation or configuration process by hand; implies that the normal process failed due to bugs or was defeated by something exceptional in the local environment. "The worst thing about being a gateway between four different nets is having to hand-roll a new sendmail configuration every time any of them upgrades."

[Jargon File]

Last updated: 1995-02-28




1. Predetermined hardware or software activity designed to establish or maintain two machines or programs in synchronisation. Handshaking often concerns the exchange of messages or packets of data between two systems with limited buffers. A simple handshaking protocol might only involve the receiver sending a message meaning "I received your last message and I am ready for you to send me another one." A more complex handshaking protocol might allow the sender to ask the receiver if he is ready to receive or for the receiver to reply with a negative acknowledgement meaning "I did not receive your last message correctly, please resend it" (e.g. if the data was corrupted en route).

Hardware handshaking uses voltage levels or pulses on wires to carry the handshaking signals whereas software handshaking uses data units (e.g. ASCII characters) carried by some underlying communication medium.

Flow control in bit-serial data transmission such as EIA-232 may use either hardware or software handshaking.

2. The method used by two modems to establish contact with each other and to agreee on baud rate, error correction and compression protocols.

3. The exchange of predetermined signals between agents connected by a communications channel to assure each that it is connected to the other (and not to an imposter). This may also include the use of passwords and codes by an operator.

[Jargon File]

Last updated: 1995-01-13


[possibly from gestures characteristic of stage magicians] To gloss over a complex point; to distract a listener; to support a (possibly actually valid) point with blatantly faulty logic.

If someone starts a sentence with "Clearly..." or "Obviously..." or "It is self-evident that...", it is a good bet he is about to handwave (alternatively, use of these constructions in a sarcastic tone before a paraphrase of someone else's argument suggests that it is a handwave). The theory behind this term is that if you wave your hands at the right moment, the listener may be sufficiently distracted to not notice that what you have said is wrong. Failing that, if a listener does object, you might try to dismiss the objection with a wave of your hand.

The use of this word is often accompanied by gestures: both hands up, palms forward, swinging the hands in a vertical plane pivoting at the elbows and/or shoulders (depending on the magnitude of the handwave); alternatively, holding the forearms in one position while rotating the hands at the wrist to make them flutter. In context, the gestures alone can suffice as a remark; if a speaker makes an outrageously unsupported assumption, you might simply wave your hands in this way, as an accusation, far more eloquent than words could express, that his logic is faulty.

[Jargon File]


1. To wait for an event that will never occur. "The system is hanging because it can't read from the crashed drive". See wedged, hung.

2. To wait for some event to occur; to hang around until something happens. "The program displays a menu and then hangs until you type a character." Compare block.

3. To attach a peripheral device, especially in the construction "hang off": "We're going to hang another tape drive off the file server." Implies a device attached with cables, rather than something that is strictly inside the machine's chassis.


Han characters


Towers of Hanoi

Han Unification

Han character


Han characters

Nearby terms:

Hamming, RichardhamsterHan characterHANDhand cruftHandel

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