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shell: [orig. Multics techspeak, widely propagated via UNIX] n.
   1. [techspeak] The command interpreter used to pass commands to an
   operating system; so called because it is the part of the operating
   system that interfaces with the outside world.  2. More generally,
   any interface program that mediates access to a special resource
   or server for convenience, efficiency, or security reasons; for
   this meaning, the usage is usually `a shell around' whatever.
   This sort of program is also called a `wrapper'.