Foobar is a universal variable understood to represent whatever is being discussed.
It's usually used in examples that illustrate concepts and ideas in computer science.
For instance, a computer science professor may be discussing different file formats. In this case, he would call the generic-example file foo or foobar, then list the extensions associated with the file formats (e.g. foobar.txt, foobar.gif, foobar.exe, foobar.tar).
When foo or foobar is used, everyone understands that these are just examples, and they don't really exist.
Programmers and administrators also use foo and foobar in a similar context. Files or program s named with foo or foobar are understood not to be permanent and will be changed or deleted at anytime.
Foo, bar, and the compound foobar were commonly used at MIT, Stanford and the Helsinki University of Technology, Finland. Other generic variables are used other places, but only these three are considered universal.
One last note: hackers never use foobar to mean fubar!
Stay up to date on the latest developments in Internet terminology with a free weekly newsletter from Webopedia. Join to subscribe now.
The following facts and statistics capture the changing landscape of cloud computing and how service providers and customers are keeping up with... Read More »Facts about Computer Science: Education and Jobs
The following computer science facts and statistics provide a quick introduction to the changing trends in education and related careers. Read More »Texting & Chat Abbreviations
From A3 to ZZZ this guide lists 1,500 text message and online chat abbreviations to help you translate and understand today's texting lingo. Read More »
Learn about each of the five generations of computers and major technology developments that have led to the computing devices that we use... Read More »Computer Architecture Study Guide
Computer architecture provides an introduction to system design basics for most computer science students. Read More »Network Fundamentals Study Guide
Networking fundamentals teaches the building blocks of modern network design. Learn different types of networks, concepts, architecture and... Read More »