1. A person who knows how a complex piece of software or hardware works (that is, who groks
it); especially someone who can find and fix bugs quickly in an emergency. Someone is a hacker
if he or she has general hacking ability, but is a wizard with respect to something only if he or she has specific detailed knowledge of that thing. A good hacker could become a wizard for something given the time to study it.
2. A person who is permitted to do things forbidden to ordinary people; one who has wheel
privileges on a system.
3. A Unix expert, especially a Unix systems programmer. This usage is well enough established that "Unix Wizard" is a recognised job title at some corporations and to most headhunters.
, lord high fixer
. See also deep magic
, heavy wizardry
, rain dance
, voodoo programming
, wave a dead chicken
4. An interactive help utility that guides the user through a potentially complex task, such as configuring a PPP
driver to work with a new modem
. Wizards are often implemented as a sequence of dialog boxes which the user can move forward and backward through, filling in the details required. The implication is that the expertise of a human wizard in one of the above senses is encapsulated in the software wizard, allowing the average user to perform expertly.