Thursday, 19 January 2017

the bicameral xor

One house of the legislature of the US state of Georgia passed a bill in February 1953 to make “andor” the legal successor to the awkward conjunction and/or—the new term signifying all the meanings and nuance championed by the former including “either, or, both, and or or, and and or.” The proposal however was struck down by the upper house and “andor” perished ignobly on the senate floor. Xor is the so-called “exclusive or” in logical operations that only holds true when conditions differ: the law passed one chamber but failed in the other. I wonder if there has been any linguistic lobby for the novel ways that intervening bit of punctuation, the slash, has taken on.