TWAIN was first released on 1992-02-29 and is currently
ratified at version 2.0 as of 2005-11-28. It is maintained by
the TWAIN Working Group.
Kevin Bier, chairman-emeritus of the TWAIN Working Group and
the one of the original co-author/editors of TWAIN 1.0, chose
the name TWAIN after reading letters by Mark Twain. It was
unofficially considered to mean "toolkit without an important
The word "twain" is an archaic form meaning "two". It appears
in Kipling's "The Ballad of East and West" - "...and never the
twain shall meet...", reflecting the difficulty, at the time,
of connecting scanners and personal computers. It was
up-cased to TWAIN to make it more distinctive. This led
people to believe it was an acronym, and then to a contest to
come up with an expansion. None were selected, but the entry
"Technology Without An Interesting Name" continues to haunt
The TWAIN Working Group.