A washing machine is a large metal appliance, usually with a door on either the top or the front. (Household laundry machines usually have a solid metal flip-back door on top, while industrial washing machines have a round, glass door on the front.)

Inside the machine is a hollow drum, into which dirty articles of clothing or linens are placed. The machines are used, in conjunction with detergents, to clean clothing, towels, or most any cloth item.

In surfing, going through the washing machine is how surfers describe the
feeling of being held under water and spun around and
around by the breaking wave. Going through the washing
has certain disadvantages, namely: it is
hard to breathe underwater; your legrope can get
wrapped around your legs making it hard to swim;
you can be bashed against the bottom of the ocean,
which is not too bad if it's sand, but can be painful
if it's coral or rocks.

wart = W = washing software

washing machine n.

1. Old-style 14-inch hard disks in floor-standing cabinets. So called because of the size of the cabinet and the `top-loading' access to the media packs -- and, of course, they were always set on `spin cycle'. The washing-machine idiom transcends language barriers; it is even used in Russian hacker jargon. See also walking drives. The thick channel cables connecting these were called `bit hoses' (see hose, sense 3). 2. [CMU] A machine used exclusively for washing software. CMU has clusters of these.

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

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