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/eks'ee/ or /eek'see/ or /E-X-E/ n. An executable binary file. Some operating systems (notably MS-DOS, VMS, and TWENEX) use the extension .EXE to...
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[coined by USENETter Tom Maddox, popularized by William Gibson's cyberpunk SF novels a contrived acronym for `Intrusion Countermeasure Electronics'] Security software (in Gibson's novels, software that responds to intrusion by attempting to literally kill the intruder). Also, `icebreaker' a program designed for cracking security on a system. Neither term is in serious use yet as of mid-1991, but many hackers find the metaphor attractive, and each may develop a denotation in the future.