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Date:   Sun, 5 Jul 2020 12:54:17 +1000
From:   Dave Airlie <>
To:     Matthew Wilcox <>
Cc:     Randy Dunlap <>,
        ksummit <>,
        Greg Kroah-Hartman <>,
        LKML <>,,
        Chris Mason <clm@...clm>
Subject: Re: [Ksummit-discuss] [PATCH] CodingStyle: Inclusive Terminology

On Sun, 5 Jul 2020 at 10:10, Matthew Wilcox <> wrote:
> Erm, red-black trees don't have a derivation from gambling terminology either. The wikipedia article says:
> In a 1978 paper, "A Dichromatic Framework for Balanced Trees",[6] Leonidas J. Guibas and Robert Sedgewick derived the red-black tree from the symmetric binary B-tree.[7] The color "red" was chosen because it was the best-looking color produced by the color laser printer available to the authors while working at Xerox PARC.[8] Another response from Guibas states that it was because of the red and black pens available to them to draw the trees.[9]
> Left-right tree makes no sense. It doesn't distinguish the rbtree from its predecessor the avl tree.  I don't think it's helpful to rename a standard piece of computing terminology unless it's actually hurting us to have it. Obviously if it were called a "master-slave" tree, I would be in favour of renaming it.

As I said "it means nothing if you've never interacted with gambling
culture," red black in the context of the trees as zero meaning other
than as a name to find it on the internet, Search for that name enough
and you will undoubtedly be getting ads for online roulette sites
within hours, if you have a problem gambling past, this might not be
the desired effect you'd want.

The reasons something was named a particular thing can and will be
different from what a societal context for them means now, and I
believe it's more important to worry about current societal contexts
than legacy historical namings. I'm not seriously suggesting we rename
red-black trees, but if someone who had a problematic gambling
background had issues with them I'd definitely be open for considering


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