How did an informal word for an insect become synonymous with a computer error or glitch? Thus the first computer bug was quite literally a bug, and the name stuck. Thomas Edison himself patented an electronic workaround to this problem in 1873, which he referred to as a “bug catcher” or “bug trap” – suggesting this phenomenon as a likely origin for the term. Unfortunately, this software contained two serious software bugs which soon resulted in tragedy. This incident was caused by yet another software error – a counter overflow – which caused the updated software to skip a critical safety step and withdraw the x-ray target from the electron beam.