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The forward slash is an ASCII text character that is used for punctuation, alphanumerical representations in mathematics, general-purpose coding and other aspects of digital text and design. It is also the common format for file and folder designations in command line systems.
The forward slash is also known simply as the slash or, less commonly, the oblique stroke.
One common use of the forward slash is in fractions, where the number that goes on top of the fraction is represented to the left of forward slash, and the number that goes in the bottom of the fraction is represented to the right of the forward slash. This usage goes back to early typewriters and typesetting, but is still used today. A newer use of the forward slash is the file and folder designations mentioned above. It is also commonly used to demarcate comments in many programming languages — in other words, between two sets of forward slashes, there are words and symbols that humans can look at, but the computer does not consider as part of functional programming.
By contrast, the backslash is a different ASCII character that is less commonly used. The backslash or backward slash can be used in some files and for designations, but is not as common as the forward slash.