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Happy Birthday Dear Emoticon, Happy Birthday To You


Perrie Juran
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At 11:44 a.m. on September 19, 1982, a man named Scott Fahlman posted a message to an electronic computer-science department bulletin board at Carnegie Mellon University. And with that simple action he did something wonderful: He became the individual who would later be credited as the inventor of :-), an ASCII-based emoticon.

http://technolog.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2011/09/19/7839967-29-years-ago-a-smiley-was-born

 

So let's see all your wonderful :-D

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Thanks Charlotte, but I was thinking specifically of 'shorthand' codes which operators used between themselves.  Not emoticons as we know them, although they might have been.  There were certainly the equivalents of LOL and other abbreviations.  Presumably 'emoticons' even goes back to roots like SWALK and other written 'codes'.

I'd be suprised if : - ) was the first character-art used in written, then typed communications, that's the thing.  It might be the first we recognise but I'm sure forumites have more, historical, information.

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Oh, ok. Here's an expert from the op's link, it explains that he doesn't think he was the first to ever use that symbol, his use of it was just the one that took hold, he even mentions the teletype operators.

 

Some people have told me that the :-) or :) convention was used by teletype operators in the old days. Maybe so. Others have written to tell me that their father or uncle or they themselves used to type these symbols, or something close to them, in private letters (or, in one case, on punch cards) long before 1982. I haven’t (yet) seen any hard evidence of this, but I have no reason to doubt their accounts. It’s a simple and obvious idea after all, and the independent invention of this idea by multiple people would not be implausible. So, the smiley idea may have appeared and disappeared a few times before my 1982 post. I probably was not the first person ever to type these three letters in sequence, perhaps even with the meaning of “I’m just kidding” and perhaps even online. But I do believe that my 1982 suggestion was the one that finally took hold, spread around the world, and spawned thousands of variations. My colleagues and I have been able to watch the idea spread out through the world’s computer networks from that original post. Let me close with a quote from an interview with Vladimir Nabokov, author of Lolita and other modern classics (thanks to Eli Brandt for calling this to my attention): Q: How do you rank yourself among writers (living) and of the immediate past? Nabokov: I often think there should exist a special typographical sign for a smile – some sort of concave mark, a supine round bracket, which I would now like to trace in reply to your question.

from: http://www.cs.cmu.edu/~sef/sefSmiley.htm

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