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The concept of wildcard it is used in certain games to name the face of a dice , to file or to the letter that allows to replace another or that is applied to obtain some type of benefit. The jokers emerged in the second half of the XIX century and over time they became popular.

In the current decks there are usually two jokers . The figure chosen to represent the wild cards, like the color of the card, depends on each printing press. Usually the wild card is represented as a jester or a minstrel , although such choice may vary.

The use of the wild card depends on each game. At chinchón , for example, the wild card allows you to replace any card. Because the goal is to keep as few points as possible, it is important to part with the wild cards as they add up 25 or 50 points. Instead on the trick , to cite another card game, wild cards are not used.

In colloquial language, it is said that an element or individual is a wild card when it can meet multiple functions : "The young Venezuelan became the wild card of the team: he can play in defense, in the midfield or even in the offensive sector", “For the president, Gomez is a wild card: he has already held positions in four different ministries”, “This coat serves me as a wild card since I use it in both formal and informal occasions”.

In the field of computing , this term is also used, although it is a symbol that can replace one or more characters of all possible in the system. Between the wild characters most used in this context are the asterisk, the percent sign, the underscore and the final question mark ('*', '%', '_' and '?', respectively).

It is important to understand that in each application you can use different wildcard characters; for example while in TWO the asterisk is used to represent any number of characters (from one to the limit of the file name or its extension, within the possible characters according to the nomenclature rules), in databases programmed in SQL the percent sign is used to replace a character string from zero to the limit of the countryside , and the underscore for one. In regular expressions, on the other hand, the period is usually used as a wildcard character.

In the operating systems Currently, the wild card is used in file searches even without the user being aware of it. For example, when we want to open a file for editing in Photoshop, the program presents the last folder we have used and the files that respond to one of several formats present in a list: "* .png, * .jpg, * .psd ", etc.

A few decades ago, when operating systems had no graphical interface, a text command should be used to search or list files with a certain extension; for example: "DIR * .jpg "is used in DOS to show all files with extension" jpg "of the current directory.

Although many people do not know, most Internet search engines also support the use of characters wildcards to represent words that we do not remember when doing the search. For example, in Google we can search "Mount * is the highest mountain in the world" if we have forgotten the name "Everest", and we will obtain the desired results. This also serves to replace characters within a word.

In this particular case, it should be noted that Google's technology is so advanced that it is not necessary to use a wildcard character, since its "intuition "It allows you to match almost all our searches and often seems to read our minds when you complete our sentences before us.

In some countries Finally, the subject who always looks for his comfort : "Juan is a wild card, you can't expect much from him".

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