The Etymology of Programming – Brittany Storoz @ JSConf EU

Posted June 30, 2018 in Links


I unfortunately missed Brittany’s talk in-person at JSConf EU this year, but lucky for all of us, we have a wonderful video recording! And rather than sharing via a mere tweet, this talk is deserving of it’s own blog post. 

I highly suggest watching Brittany’s full presentation – she is a brilliant speaker, and her talk is full of both fun facts about programming jargon and critical information about the impact of the terms we use.

Here are a few of my key takeaways:

  • Stop using the terms whitelist/blacklist – they are horribly racist.
  • Be aware of the tech industry’s extreme bias toward native English-speakers. Write documentation in language that can be easily translated, and resist the urge to use slang in forum or issue threads that could be helpful to anyone.
  • Some programming terms – variable, for instance – do not have direct translations in other languages, and that makes it infinitely harder for others to learn.

Brittany (a.k.a. .DS_Storoz on Twitter 😂) teaches at the Turing School of Software & Design which looks fantastic – a seven-month program sounds like a grand alternative to a three-month bootcamp! Plus, at first glance, the front-end curriculum looks on point to my critical eyes.

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What do you think? Do you have any questions, thoughts, or related links to share? Did I make a mistake in my post?

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