Sunday, February 15, 2009


I was wondering about the Internet being referred to as "tubes."

Some people trace the idea to a speech by Senator Ted Stevens on June 28, 2006. Wikipedia has an article. His speech was widely derided as showing a profound lack of understanding about the Internet but that may have been more political than anything else.

Youtube ( was registered on February 15, 2005. Someone told me that they thought that had more to do with TV being called the "boob tube." Maybe but I always wondered about the use of both "tube" for the TV and "boob" meaning someone dumb and out of it.

I guess TV tube has to do with vacuum tubes. Have to wonder about that naming as those things aren't exactly tube like to me. I guess those things have a roughly cylindrical shape which I suppose is tube like - kind of.

Tube used to describe the subway in certain places seems pretty intuitive. That does seem like a tube more.

Then there is the inner tube. Except we don't have those much on cars now. I can more see it I guess on a bicycle. Wonder why we call the "inner" one "inner" but we call the outer one a tire?



There are a lot of web sites with "tube" in the URL. You can search using Google (I linked Google just in case someone has missed learning what Google is) and restrict the location of the phrase just in the domain name.

I thought that was pretty cool. When you go to the Google main search page click on Advanced Search. On that page there is a place to click "Date, usage rights, numeric range, and more" and that's where you can specify "in the URL of the page." Pretty nice feature. This link is for advanced search help from Google.

Also, the asterisk or star (*) character can be used as a wild card character in case someone didn't know that.

I decided to search in the URL for "*" which Google changes to "allinurl: *" or this link if you prefer just clicking. The search produced a lot of hits. I'd tell you how many but every time I did it the number was a little different.

I clicked a couple of those links a little too hastily without reading the summaries. Oh my!!

Some of the pages are quite nice and rather innocent and even helpful. Some are considerably more "adult." And I wonder why we use "adult" to mean pornographic?

So be sure to turn on the "Safe Search" feature on Google. I corrected the link I posted above to include safe search by the way. Didn't want anyone getting a shock.

It is interesting that there are places where people are willing and eager apparently to upload rather revealing pictures of themselves.

I guess that is another subject for another time though.


Lori1955 said...

Well I just had to check and see if there was a "tube" and sure enough, there was. LOL

flintysooner said...

There's but not www. There's also that redirects to Lot's of interesting "tube" sites.

dave said...

I have often wondered about the use of the word "adult." Talk about things that don't always mean what they say!
English has more.

flintysooner said...

I should have also searched for URLs with tubes - bunch of them.

And how about "down the tubes?" No one seems to know what tubes are referenced in that phrase either.

Then there is "having your tubes tied" also known as a tubal ligation. Tubal is of or pertaining to a tube - which doesn't really explain why some things are tubes and some things aren't.

Of course Tubal is also a son of Japheth as well as a character in the Merchant of Venice.

I thought of several more tubes too but I guess I'm pretty much done with this subject now.