dinosaurs mating n.
Said to occur when yet another big iron merger or buyout occurs; reflects a perception by hackers that these signal another stage in the long, slow dying of the mainframe industry. In its glory days of the 1960s, it was `IBM and the Seven Dwarfs': Burroughs, Control Data, General Electric, Honeywell, NCR, RCA, and Univac. RCA and GE sold out early, and it was `IBM and the Bunch' (Burroughs, Univac, NCR, Control Data, and Honeywell) for a while. Honeywell was bought out by Bull; Burroughs merged with Univac to form Unisys (in 1984 -- this was when the phrase `dinosaurs mating' was coined); and in 1991 AT&T absorbed NCR (but spat it back out a few years later). Control Data still exists but is no longer in the mainframe business. More such earth-shaking unions of doomed giants seem inevitable.