xyzzy


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xyzzy

(games)
The canonical "magic word" from the ADVENT adventure game, in which the idea is to explore an underground cave with many rooms and to collect the treasures you find there. If you type "xyzzy" at the appropriate time, you can move instantly between two otherwise distant points. If, therefore, you encounter some bit of magic, you might remark on this quite succinctly by saying simply "Xyzzy!" "Ordinarily you can't look at someone else's screen if he has protected it, but if you type quadruple-bucky-clear the system will let you do it anyway." "Xyzzy!" Xyzzy has actually been implemented as an undocumented no-op command on several OSes; in Data General's AOS/VS, for example, it would typically respond "Nothing happens", just as ADVENT did if the magic was invoked at the wrong spot or before a player had performed the action that enabled the word. In more recent 32 bit versions, by the way, AOS/VS responds "Twice as much happens". See also plugh.

XYZZY

A magic word in the Colossal Cave Adventure game that lets you move instantly between distant places if entered at the right time. Because the game would respond with "Nothing Happens" if entered at the wrong time, the word was used as a mnemonic for a no-op (no operation) instruction in Data General's AOS operating system. It is also a popular variable name in programming. See no-op and mnemonic.