Saturday, April 28, 2007

outgeek this

The husband reports that at his software start-up, the new CEO wishes to institute a practice of giving software releases codenames. I suggested naming releases after serial killers (Ng, Ramirez, Gacy) or flavors (Bitter, Salty, and Sour seemed like especially good codenames), but the Sober Husband revealed that he "campaigned hard to name them after Dr. Who villains."


Silliyak said...

You win.

crazymumma said...

I don't both have great ideas. But hey, I'll go for you since you are writing this blog...I'm cheap that way.

2amsomewhere said...

At a prior employer, there was an effort to institute a codename practice for development versions as well. The higher ups made the decision to use the name of the color used on the binding for the big documentation book that accompanied the product.

The first codename based on this scheme was yellow, which prompted several behind the scenes jokes from developers who immediately associated the codename with a bodily fluid. Soon thereafter, the practice of codenaming was abandoned.

The conventions for naming computers on the network was also very curious. Sun machines running SunOS 4.x were named after insects (mosquito, dragonfly, etc.). Sun machines running Solaris 2.x were named after dead rock singers (lennon, hendrix, cobain, and vaughan). Linux machines were named after flowers. The sole DEC Alpha-AXP machine was named after a pesticide (ddt).

I always lobbied to have my computers assigned the names of defunct railroads that once operated in my home state (monon, wabash, nickelplate, vandalia, and penncentral).

The Debian GNU/Linux folks have a nice scheme going, naming their releases after characters from Toy Story.

Maybe the last names of fashion supermodels? I dunno.


the Drunken Housewife said...

Trains are good, but in the workplace, I wouldn't recommend supermodel names. Not to get all PC on you, but that's the kind of little thing that can pile up and create a workplace where women feel, well, like they don't fit in. The way to avoid that would be to include some male hunk last names (Pitt, before Angelina sapped the will out of him, or Clooney or Garcia). ever assisting you in the battle between the genders, dh

2amsomewhere said...

(slapping own forehead in stupidity)

Sorry, I didn't even consider the hostile work environment angle of that suggestion.

Of course, serial murder tends to be a predominantly male avocation, so a similar case could be made for that schema.

I think what motivated me to choose supermodels was a vague recollection that Sober H's employer's product had to do with imaging, so the field of commercial photography came to mind.

Here's a possible compromise: Pick well known names from the other side of the shutter, so you could achieve some sort of gender balance (e.g. leibovitz and adams). We could even work in a railroad angle with a release named after O. Winston Link.


Anonymous said...

My husband's company names their computers after mental illnesses and personality disorders.


the Drunken Housewife said...

The issue isn't that the names would be all after persons of one gender (also, for serial killers, one could include Wuornos and Hindley, and that's just off the top of my head. I could come up with more, like the last names of those old women who were knocking off elderly men for insurance in SoCal). The issue is that your namesakes would be all of women who are famous for their sexual attractiveness, and the result would undoubtedly be occasional innuendo and grossness. I know men... I know geeky men... and they are bound to be getting a laugh out of "I'm working on Banks, heh heh heh" and "Moss is looking really hot right now" and so on and so forth to the point where it's going to be annoying. I'm not talking about rising to the level of litigation here, but it's that sort of thing that makes many women feel out of place in a work environment, like they don't belong and like their personal attractiveness and gameness for enduring sexual innuendo are being sized up. Best to avoid that, best to avoid that. In the Sober Husband's company, there are no female employees to be offended, but hey, maybe someday they will hire one, and they do have female marketers and other contractors upon occasion.

the Drunken Housewife said...

I love mental illnesses and personality disorders for a naming scheme. Brilliant, just brilliant.

Janet said...

Warren goes for jazz musicians -- Oh, the geek of it all--