Some programs and media come packed with secret “goodies” called Easter Eggs. These are fun little additions, added by programmers that can be found by accident, by completing some tasks, or by hearing about them from other people. In this article we will find some of those Easter eggs. Specifically, we’ll cover:
- What is an Easter Egg?
- What an Easter Egg is Not
- Easter Egg Examples
What is an Easter Egg?
Easter eggs, in software, are deliberately added and not just “glitches” (see more about that below.) Often these Easter eggs are added by programmers for a joke, to get some attention, or to add some flair to the software you’re using.
A classic example of an Easter egg is a hidden menu on DVD or an animation in a piece of software that can only be seen by pressing certain keys.
What an Easter Egg is Not
There are some common misconceptions with the term “Easter Egg.” An Easter egg is not:
- A bug in a program.
- An imposed restriction.
- A hack in a program made by the end user.
For example, it has been claimed that not being able to create a folder, in Windows, with one of the following names is an Easter egg:
PRN, AUX, CLOCK$, NUL, COM1, COM2, COM3, COM4, COM5, COM6, COM7, COM8, COM9, LPT1, LPT2, LPT3, LPT4, LPT5, LPT6, LPT7, LPT8, and LPT9
This is not an example of an Easter egg. This is a restriction that dates back to DOS, to protect certain file names being used that are reserved by the operating system: