What is this ubiquitous "obidos" of Amazon.com fame? The answer can be
found in Wikipedia's entry for "Amazon.com":
"Some of the words in Amazon.com URLs are nods to the Amazon River and
Brazil: obidos comes from Óbidos, the meeting place of the Amazon's
tributaries; varzea is Portuguese (Brazil's main language) for a
forest flooded after heavy rains, as parts of the Amazon forest are;
gp is short for Gurupa, a region in northeastern Brazil near the mouth
of the Amazon."
< http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amazon.com#Trivia >
A September 2002 post titled "The Mystery of Obidos" on a weblog
called "Deadprogrammer's Cafe" notes that the Amazon/obidos question
was a subject of debate on Usenet. Here's how some interpreted
- Castle near Lisbon
- OBI (Wan Kenobi) + DOS (Disk Operating System)
- 'OBI' = Object Broker Interface
The blogger goes on to quote a Livejournal user who had this to say:
"I worked at Amazon for a couple of years, and can mostly answer that.
"Obidos is the area where the Amazon is "concentrated" - it narrows to
a point about a mile wide and a couple hundred feet deep. It's the
chokepoint of the Amazon. A wry sense of humor turned that to the
"Amazon wrote their own web serving environment because the selection
of scripting/webcontrol languages when they got started was so lousy.
They had to call it something, so obidos it was. :)"
< http://www.deadprogrammer.com/?m=200209&paged=2 >
You may also be interested in this Oct. 30, 2005 post by blogger Jason
Diamond in which he laments an apparent disappearance of "obidos" from
< http://jason.diamond.name/weblog/2005/10/30/navigating-the-amazon >
Finally, you may want to check out a discussion called "What Exactly
Are Obidos?" that took place in a forum on the Fog Creek software
The following search string was successful in finding your answer:
amazon url obidos
All the best!