# : Java Glossary

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#

Names

# is officially called the octothorpe, from its eight points or possibly representing eight fields. In Twitter, it is called a hash tag. There, it is used to mark a keyword in a post. On a telephone keypad, it is called the pound key. I think this goes back to the days of the mechanical typewriter where shift-3 gave you either £ or # depending on the model. It is sometimes called the number sign. It looks similar to the musical sharp ().

Uses

In HTML (Hypertext Markup Language) it is used in hex entities such as ♯ or decimal entities such as ♯. It is used in Unix to introduce the name of an interpreter for a given script. e.g. #!/usr/bin/perl In Python, it introduces a comment. It has no special significance in Java.


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