I can't say who came up with it.  The point I first became aware of it was
the posts, and consultation reports series, on Meta.  It may well have
predated that though, in which case I couldn't say.

Advanced search in old enwp and meta dumps, or mailing lists would be a way
to explore before that.  The topic was only discussed _in depth_ in a
limited number of places easily identified by search, the expressions are
very distinctive, and a list of wiki pages or list threads can be searched
fairly easily to find exact posts or dates.


On Wed, Jun 13, 2012 at 9:30 PM, David Gerard <dger...@gmail.com> wrote:

> I was looking over old discussions, and wondered: who originally came
> up with the notion that the "principle of least surprise" should apply
> to educational content? If it existed before Wikimedia, who introduced
> it to the image filter discussion, on what rationale?
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