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  • noun Alternative capitalization of Sagan


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  • A unit of measure equal to at least 4 billion, according to NPR's Says You.

    February 28, 2010

  • Well, I'm not about to make room for putative units "defined" only in terms of inequalities on my list. Maybe reesetee, or his robot-captor Reese Tee, can give it a home.

    February 28, 2010

  • Doesn't seem like the most useful unit of measurement I've ever seen.

    February 28, 2010

  • NPR didn't get it quite right. one of Sagan's catchphrases was "billions and billions"; I'm assuming they figured this would have to denote no less than 2¹² + 2¹², whereas strictly speaking, 1¹²+1 is technically "billions". Math pedantry aside, the Jargon File v5.0.1 has:

    sagan: /say'gn/, n. (from Carl Sagan's TV series Cosmos; think “billions and billions”) A large quantity of anything. “There's a sagan different ways to tweak Emacs.”

    March 24, 2014

  • Sagan, which means "billions and billions" from the late Carl Sagan. Although he used the phrase literally when discussing stars and galaxies, my usage is figurative, as in "Sagans of cars in the mall parking lot the week before Christmas" or "Sagans of emails to wade through in my inbox".

    January 26, 2015