Thursday, 24 November 2016

dongle or airdrop

I knew that the close-proximity wireless data transfer was the namesake of Viking ruler Harald Bluetooth and even bore his runic initials in the medium’s symbol, but I ought not have just been pleased and satisfied with that bit of trivia and not wondered why.
The person of Bluetooth, to whom that moniker was given for his fondness of blueberries, was interestingly the second king of a uniting Denmark and Norway and father of the first canonical Danish king of England, Sven Forkbeard. An engineer at the Swedish telecommunications company Ericsson who was working in 1997 on a way to synchronise devices, mobile phones with computers at the time, at close range was reading a history of Scandinavia at the time and choose “Bluetooth” as the working title for their project—in collaboration with Finnish Nokia. Once the technology had been worked out and they were ready to unveil this new feature, on the advice of marketers they nearly named the ad-hoc networking feature Flirt—close but not touching, but harking back to the original implication behind the name—for the king who brought together diverse tribes into a single united kingdom (and made them all into Christians as well), they wisely and artfully decided to stick with Bluetooth in the end.