Application Development: How to Speak Geek: Decoding Programmer Jargon

 
 
By Darryl K. Taft  |  Posted 2010-05-28
 
 
 

How to Speak Geek: Cracking Programmer Jargon

by Darryl K. Taft

How to Speak Geek: Cracking Programmer Jargon

Banana Banana Banana

This is a term to describe placeholder text indicating that documentation is in progress or yet to be completed. Mostly used because FxCop complains when a public function lacks documentation.

Banana Banana Banana

Barack Obama

A project management account to which the most aspirational tickets—stuff youd really like to do but will probably never get approval for—get assigned.

Barack Obama

Bugfoot

A bug that isnt reproducible and has been sighted by only one person. This is similar to the Loch Ness Monster Bug.

Bugfoot

Counterbug

A defensive move useful for code reviews. If someone reviewing your code presents you with a bug thats your fault, you counter with a counterbug: a bug caused by the reviewer.

Counterbug

Drug Report

A bug report so utterly incomprehensible that whoever submitted it must have been smoking crack.

Drug Report

Chug Report

The lesser version of Drug Report, where the submitter is thought have had one too many.

Chug Report

Shrug Report

A bug report with no error message or repro steps and only a vague description of the problem. Usually contains the phrase "doesn't work."

Shrug Report

Smug Report

A bug submitted by a user who thinks he knows a lot more about the system's design than he really does. Filled with irrelevant technical details and one or more suggestions (always wrong) about what he thinks is causing the problem and how we should fix it.

Smug Report

Duck

A feature added for no other reason than to draw management attention and a directive that it be removed, thus avoiding unnecessary changes in other aspects of the product.

Duck

Fear-Driven Development

When project management adds more pressure, such as by firing a member of the team.

Fear-Driven Development

Ghetto Code

A particularly inelegant and obviously suboptimal section of code that still meets the requirements.

Ghetto Code

Refactoring

The process of taking a well-designed piece of code and, through a series of small, reversible changes, making it completely unmaintainable by anyone except yourself.

Refactoring

Stringly Typed

A riff on "strongly typed." Used to describe an implementation that needlessly relies on strings when programmer- and refactor-friendly options are available.

Stringly Typed

Jimmy

A generalized name for the clueless/new developer.

Jimmy

Unicorny

An adjective to describe a feature that's so early in the planning stages that it might as well be imaginary.

Unicorny

Workaroundability

This is the feeling when an already hacked approach still can or can't be hacked further.

Workaroundability

Baklava Code

Code with too many layers (also has been known in some circles as lasagna code).

Baklava Code

Common Law Feature

A bug in the application that has existed so long that it is now part of the expected functionality, and user support is required to actually fix it.

Common Law Feature

Code Slush
For the date after which no changes will be accepted, except, of course, all the changes that management will ask for at the last minute. Like Code Freeze

but accepting of the fact that some changes will still get in when deadlines prove to be softer than a snowball in June.

Code Slush</b><br />For the date after which no changes will be accepted, except, of course, all the changes that management will ask for at the last minute. Like <b>Code Freeze

Mad Girlfriend Bug

This refers to the times when a developer sees that there is a definite problem with the code execution but cant tell what is. Then when you look closer at the code, it will act just like your temperamental girlfriend and indicate that everything is just fine.

Mad Girlfriend Bug

Hydra Code

Code that cannot be fixed without spawning even more bugs. One fix causes two new bugs. It should be rewritten.

Hydra Code

Jenga Code

When the whole thing collapses when you alter a block of code.

Jenga Code

Bug Bait

Programming practices that encourage, rather than discourage, program flaws.

Bug Bait

Cut-and-Waste Code

When someone uses cut-and-paste code they found online (usually from a blog) in a production product. The result is usually a lot of wasted time trying to track down an obscure bug from a line or variable that undoubtedly made sense in the original context but not in the current project.

Cut-and-Waste Code

Mortgage Code

Code purposely so terrible that only you can maintain it, forcing your employer to keep you, thus providing job security (so you can pay your mortgage).

Mortgage Code

Blogware

Code that looks great in a blog post but doesn't work well in a full application.

Blogware

.NET Sandwich

When .NET code, generally known as "native code," calls other .NET code and makes the poorly designed application crash.

.NET Sandwich

Impediphile

Someone who codes in such a manner as to constantly cause impediments to others work.

Impediphile

Bottle Rocket

When an application launches, displays something and then leaves a trail of error messages before crashing.

Bottle Rocket

Natural Selection

The act of replacing someone else's code with your own.

Natural Selection

Claustrocodeia

The fear of coding on a dinky monitor that has no screen real estate.

Claustrocodeia

Field Trip Fix

The solution to dealing with an issue that is frustrating you to the point of madness. The cure for which is taking a field trip to a local restaurant for a mental break.

Field Trip Fix

Lethal Dependency Injection

Using too much Spring XML code to configure a handful of classes.

Lethal Dependency Injection

Rocket Fuel