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holy wars /n./ [from Usenet, but may predate it]
/n./ flame wars over religious issues. The paper by Danny
Cohen that popularized the terms big-endian and
little-endian in connection with the LSB-first/MSB-first
controversy was entitled "On Holy Wars and a Plea for Peace".
Other perennial Holy Wars have included EMACS vs. vi,
my personal computer vs. everyone else's personal computer,
ITS vs. Unix, Unix vs. VMS, BSD Unix
vs. USG Unix, C vs. Pascal, C vs.
FORTRAN, etc., ad nauseam. The characteristic that distinguishes
holy wars from normal technical disputes is that in a holy war
most of the participants spend their time trying to pass off
personal value choices and cultural attachments as objective
technical evaluations. See also theology.
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