walking drives = W = wall follower

wall interj.

[WPI] 1. An indication of confusion, usually spoken with a quizzical tone: "Wall??" 2. A request for further explication. Compare octal forty. 3. [Unix, from `write all'] v. To send a message to everyone currently logged in, esp. with the wall(8) utility.

It is said that sense 1 came from the idiom `like talking to a blank wall'. It was originally used in situations where, after you had carefully answered a question, the questioner stared at you blankly, clearly having understood nothing that was explained. You would then throw out a "Hello, wall?" to elicit some sort of response from the questioner. Later, confused questioners began voicing "Wall?" themselves.

--The Jargon File version 4.3.1, ed. ESR, autonoded by rescdsk.

A wall is a kind of formation in the game of Go (Wei Qi/Badouk). As one would expect, it consists of a number of stones of the same colour in a more or less straight line, without breaks. It's a little more specific than that, though, because a wall requires the following two additional properties:

1) If one side of it is up against the opponent's stones, the other side is not facing the edge of the goban (board).

2) It is free of obvious defects, where the opponent can easily cut through.

Therefore, in the following diagram, both players have a three-stone wall (bottom edge marked with ###, left and right edges of the board reasonably far away):


Note that the White (o) wall is still only a three-stone wall, despite the fact that it contains four stones. This is because its actual height is only 3 stones; the fourth stone is not really part of the wall. Now, contrast with the next diagram, where neither player really has a wall:


White's stones (o) don't actually make a wall, because they face the edge of the goban (we'd say instead that they enclose territory), and Black's (x) aren't either, because the cutting points marked a and b make the structure very weak.

Walls are usually formed as a result of a pushing battle. If the pushes are happening orthogonally to the nearest edge of the goban, both players will be forming walls. If they are happening near the edge, and parallel to it, one person will be getting a wall facing the centre of the goban, while the other will be making more-or-less secure territory along the edge.

Why does one want to build a wall? Because it radiates influence in the direction it faces. A wall generally has enough liberties that it will find a way to live, and so any friendly stones that can manage to connect to the wall will also live. Also, stones caught in the area between a wall and another enemy formation can be pressed against the wall as a potent form of attack. Thus, a wall provides a valuable asset should a fight break out nearby. This means that if you build a wall, you should probably try to pick a fight in its area of influence.

There is a common rule of thumb regarding extending from a friendly wall. It is this: if there are no enemy stones in between your stone and the wall, the optimal extension is to have n+1 empty points between your extension stone and the wall. In the following series of diagrams, ranging from a "one-stone wall" (aka a single stone) to a three-stone wall, all the extensions are ideal, according to the common wisdom of the pros.




This rule can help to decide whether or not it is favorable to continue a pushing battle. If one has a stone already in place to serve as an extension, one might consider trying to push until the wall reaches the size necessary for the extension to be ideal. Consider the following situation:


It is White's turn, and she wants to decide whether to continue to push at "b", hane at "a", or play tenuki (abandon the local situation and play elsewhere). Looking at her stone on the left, she sees that there are 5 empty points between it and her wall. This means that she wants a wall 4 stones high, so that her stone is ideally placed. This means it is probably worth letting Black increase his corner territory by continuing the pushing battle with a push or hane, rather than playing tenuki. As for choosing between "a" and "b", playing "b" allows Black an extra point of territory, but will be sente (retain initiative to tenuki) if Black answers at "a", "d" or "e". If White plays the hane at "a", Black will (probably) answer at "f" and White will have a cutting point to worry about at "b". If she immediately defends at "b" or continues pushing at "e", she will end in gote. Whether "a" or "b" is better probably depends on other nearby stones not shown in the diagram, as well as the number of urgent moves elsewhere on the goban.

To walk or crawl up the wall; to be scored up at a public-house. Wall-eyed, having an eye with little or no sight, all white like a plaistered wall.

The 1811 Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue.

A wall is a structure, usually taller than it is thick, and wider than it is tall.

Walls usually have one of three major functions:
1. To keep things out, like rain, foxes or barbarians
2. To keep things in, like heat, geese or East Germans
3. To keep things up, like roofs.

Less common uses include: to provide a platform for the pasting of posters or writing of grafitti, to serve as an improvised urinal on the side of buildings, and to be something marines have to scale in their annual physicals. Walls also are commonly used in many languages as metaphors to describe protection, separation, insularity or exclusion.

Ever since Humans moved out of caves and then discovered they actually don't like their neighbours, people have been erecting walls for centuries. although unlike most other engineering activities wall-building technology has not changed much. Ur started off with mud and pise (a form of clay); other civilisations have used granite, lime , wood, bamboo, shale and any other material found locally in abundance that could be used to build a strong, solid wall. The latest major innovation has been concrete , invented by Joseph Monier and patented in 1867, which has been improved on ever since (cf reinforced concrete).

Famous Walls

Hadrian's Wall (aka Vallum Hadriani)
Location: from Wallsend to Solway Firth's shores (120 kms)
Built: 122-132 AD
Materials: limestone and turf, depending on location.
Patron: Emperor Hadrian

The Upper Germanic Lines (aka Rhatian Limes)
Location: Katwijk, the Netherlands (near the North Sea coast) to Kelheim, Germany (568 kms). Initally built as two separate walls, which were later joined together.
Built: 12 AD
Abandoned: third century AD+ (defeated by Germanic tribes)
Materials: Limestone
Patron: Emperor Augustus

The Great Wall of China (aka Fortress of 10,000 Li)
Location: from Lop Nur in Xinjiang to Shanhai Pass in Manchuria , China (6,352 kms)
Built: progressively from 208 BC. Last wall built in the reign of Emperor Wanli of the Ming Dynasty 1368-1640 .
Materials: limestone, granite, rammed earth or fired brick, depending on location.
Patron: originally the first emperor of the Qin Dynasty.

Aurelian Walls
Location: surrounding Rome (21 kms)
Built: 270-273 AD
Abandoned: 1870 (defeated by Bersaglieri's army)
Materials: brick, white stone
Patron: Emperor Aurelian.

Anastasian Wall (aka: Anastasius Suru or the Long Walls of Thrace)
Location: from Silvri near the Sea of Marmara to Evcik l'skelesi near the Black Sea in Turkey (56 kms)
Built: late 5th century.
Abandoned: 7th century (repeatedly defeated by Huns, Bulgars and other invaders)
Material: Limestone
Patron: Emperor Anastasius I.

Berlin Wall (aka Die Berliner Mauer or The anti-Fascist Protection Barrier)
Location: Surrounding West Berlin (155 kms)
Built: August 11, 1961
Demolished: 1989+ (defeated by German protestors)
Materials: originally a mere wire fence; concrete barriers were added in 1965, and in 1975 the full monty of bunkers, anti-vehicle barriers, watchtowers and 45,000 reinforced concrete barriers was finally added.
Patron: Walter Ulbricht.

Moroccan Wall
Location: along the Moroccan-controlled portions of Western Sahara (2,500 kms).
Built: 1983 - 1987.
Materials: sand and stone walls, with fences, berms and landmines.
Patron: government of the Kingdom of Morocco.

Other walls famous for their aethetic, cultural or historic properties include:

  • Vietnam Veterans Memorial, in the National Mall inWashington DC, United States of America. Built in
  • The Green Monster, in the Fenway Park baseball stadium in Boston, United States of America, a 37 foot green wooden fence built in 1912. Famous for foiling many a Red Sox slug.
  • The Wailing Wall, alongside the western side of Temple Mount in West Jerusalem, built in 19BC.
  • Wall (?), n. Naut.

    A kind of knot often used at the end of a rope; a wall knot; a wale.

    Wall knot, a knot made by unlaying the strands of a rope, and making a bight with the first strand, then passing the second over the end of the first, and the third over the end of the second and through the bight of the first; a wale knot. Wall knots may be single or double, crowned or double-crowned.

    © Webster 1913.

    Wall (?), n. [AS. weall, from L. vallum a wall, vallus a stake, pale, palisade; akin to Gr. a nail. Cf. Interval.]


    A work or structure of stone, brick, or other materials, raised to some height, and intended for defense or security, solid and permanent inclosing fence, as around a field, a park, a town, etc., also, one of the upright inclosing parts of a building or a room.

    The plaster of the wall of the King's palace.
    Dan. v. 5.


    A defense; a rampart; a means of protection; in the plural, fortifications, in general; works for defense.

    The waters were a wall unto them on their right hand, and on their left.
    Ex. xiv. 22.

    In such a night,
    Troilus, methinks, mounted the Troyan walls.

    To rush undaunted to defend the walls.


    An inclosing part of a receptacle or vessel; as, the walls of a steam-engine cylinder.

    4. Mining (a)

    The side of a level or drift.


    The country rock bounding a vein laterally.


    Wall is often used adjectively, and also in the formation of compounds, usually of obvious signification; as in wall paper, or wall-paper; wall fruit, or wall-fruit; wallflower, etc.

    Blank wall, Blind wall, etc. See under Blank, Blind, etc. -- To drive to the wall, to bring to extremities; to push to extremes; to get the advantage of, or mastery over. -- To go to the wall, to be hard pressed or driven; to be the weaker party; to be pushed to extremes. -- To take the wall. to take the inner side of a walk, that is, the side next the wall; hence, to take the precedence. "I will take the wall of any man or maid of Montague's." Shak. -- Wall barley Bot., a kind of grass (Hordeum murinum) much resembling barley; squirrel grass. See under Squirrel. -- Wall box. Mach. See Wall frame, below. -- Wall creeper Zool., a small bright-colored bird (Tichodroma muraria) native of Asia and Southern Europe. It climbs about over old walls and cliffs in search of insects and spiders. Its body is ash-gray above, the wing coverts are carmine-red, the primary quills are mostly red at the base and black distally, some of them with white spots, and the tail is blackish. Called also spider catcher. -- Wall cress Bot., a name given to several low cruciferous herbs, especially to the mouse-ear cress. See under Mouse-ear. -- Wall frame Mach., a frame set in a wall to receive a pillow block or bearing for a shaft passing through the wall; -- called also wall box. -- Wall fruit, fruit borne by trees trained against a wall. -- Wall gecko Zool., any one of several species of Old World geckos which live in or about buildings and run over the vertical surfaces of walls, to which they cling by means of suckers on the feet. -- Wall lizard Zool., a common European lizard (Lacerta muralis) which frequents houses, and lives in the chinks and crevices of walls; -- called also wall newt. -- Wall louse, a wood louse. -- Wall moss Bot., any species of moss growing on walls. -- Wall newt Zool., the wall lizard. Shak. -- Wall paper, paper for covering the walls of rooms; paper hangings. -- Wall pellitory Bot., a European plant (Parictaria officinalis) growing on old walls, and formerly esteemed medicinal. -- Wall pennywort Bot., a plant (Cotyledon Umbilicus) having rounded fleshy leaves. It is found on walls in Western Europe. -- Wall pepper Bot., a low mosslike plant (Sedum acre) with small fleshy leaves having a pungent taste and bearing yellow flowers. It is common on walls and rocks in Europe, and is sometimes seen in America. -- Wall pie Bot., a kind of fern; wall rue. -- Wall piece, a gun planted on a wall. H. L. Scott. -- Wall plate Arch., a piece of timber placed horizontally upon a wall, and supporting posts, joists, and the like. See Illust. of Roof. -- Wall rock, granular limestone used in building walls. [U. S.] Bartlett. -- Wall rue Bot., a species of small fern (Asplenium Ruta-muraria) growing on walls, rocks, and the like. -- Wall spring, a spring of water issuing from stratified rocks. -- Wall tent, a tent with upright cloth sides corresponding to the walls of a house. -- Wall wasp Zool., a common European solitary wasp (Odynerus parietus) which makes its nest in the crevices of walls.

    © Webster 1913.

    Wall (), v. t. [imp. & p. p. Walled (); p. pr. & vb. n. Walling.]


    To inclose with a wall, or as with a wall.

    "Seven walled towns of strength."


    The king of Thebes, Amphion,
    That with his singing walled that city.


    To defend by walls, or as if by walls; to fortify.

    The terror of his name that walls us in.


    To close or fill with a wall, as a doorway.

    © Webster 1913.

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