What is /dev/null?
In Unix programmer jargon, it may also be called the bit bucket or black hole. The null device is typically used for disposing of unwanted output streams of a process, or as a convenient empty file for input streams. This is usually done by redirection.
So why use it in a signature?
- "please send complaints to /dev/null" (i.e. "don't bother to send any complaints")
- "my mail got archived in /dev/null" (i.e. "my mail got deleted")
- A famous advertisement for the Titanium PowerBook G4 read [The Titanium Powerbook G4] Sends other UNIX boxes to /dev/null.
- A warning to users that the system's /dev/null is already 98% full.
- The April Fool's 1995 issue of the German magazine c't reported on an enhanced /dev/null chip that would efficiently dispose of the incoming data by converting it to flicker on an internal glowing LED.