If you use the Unix or Linux command-line, you may very well wonder about the origins of some of the “special” characters. One of those is tilde (~) which is expanded by the shell into “home” :-
✓ mike@Michelin» echo $HOME /home/mike ✓ mike@Michelin» echo ~ /home/mike ✓ mike@Michelin» echo ~root /root
This doesn’t of course work in general; just in the shell.
But where did this usage originate?
As it turns out, it was the markings on the keyboard of the ADM3A terminal :-
If you used Unix in the late 1970s/1980s, you may very well have used the ADM3A terminal and it seems that those who added the tilde feature to the Unix shell were amongst the users.