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The Sun Type 3 keyboard labelled its meta keys "Left" and "Right". The Type 4 changed this to a hollow diamond, or lozenge: ◇. The Type 5 and on uses a solid diamond: ◆.

My question is: why use the diamond symbol for meta?

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    I suppose because the SUN logo is diamond shaped? Mar 1 at 13:48
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    Further to Patrick's guess, notice that Sun adopted the Apple Desktop Bus and, at least for a period, Apple used much the same markings on its keyboards — albeit with a filled or hollow Apple logo rather than a diamond.
    – Tommy
    Mar 1 at 15:18
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    How old need I to be to know what is a meta key? Mar 1 at 22:03
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    @DanubianSailor old enough to read, I guess. E.g. this page contains a reference to it in the current SDL documentation. It's an ongoing term. See also: xmodmap.
    – Tommy
    Mar 1 at 22:20
  • This question is so meta. If anyone needs me, I'll be in my open apple, taking control of my windows as I shift their command structure for my upcoming space cadet induction. Mar 3 at 1:13
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To elevate Patrick Schlüter's comment into an answer: here's a picture of one of Sun's keyboards:

enter image description here

Compare and contrast with one of Apple's keyboards:

enter image description here

Or even with a modern Microsoft keyboard:

enter image description here

Sun's diamond symbols sit where Apple uses the Apple logo and Microsoft uses the Windows logo; it's therefore a safe bet that they reference Sun's diamond logo as shown on the top right of the pictured keyboard.

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    That’s a Sun keyboard from the period in which Sun used ADB.
    – Tommy
    Mar 2 at 1:25
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    @scruss Sun had to my knowledge licenced ADB from apple (together with some other stuff, they were rather close around 1985). There have been prototypes for using ADB with SUN, but they never materialized in regular products.
    – Raffzahn
    Mar 2 at 2:26
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    Tommy, I think the sequence is rather the other way around. Apple introduced the Open/Closed Apple for the Apple III (1980), and later moved it to the Apple IIe (1983). Inbetween was the Lisa with a single Apple key. When the Mac came it was replaced by command as Jobs thought putting the key combinations as Apple+letter in menues would produce too many logos on screen. Mid 80s the IIgs came with ADB - later to be added to the Mac SE - so there were keyboards with Command and Open/Closed Apple. Which is incidentally the time Apple and sun were close and the 3/180 introduced the Type 4 Keyboard
    – Raffzahn
    Mar 2 at 2:34
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    To put it on the table up front, since I've visited this site before, given that: (i) the answer no longer references ADB, and (ii) a source has been provided re: Sun/ADB; I think our choices are now ever decreasing circles of "but I know this, your references must be wrong" versus "I believe this, because here's another reference", or just putting it aside and moving on. I vote the latter.
    – Tommy
    Mar 2 at 4:05
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    @PatrickSchlüter and Tommy, your argument seems strong. I will accept this as a likely explanation. Mar 2 at 10:02

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