Wednesday 29 April 2015

The Daily Stand-Up

At the ACCU Conference this year I managed to fulfil a lifelong ambition - do a stand-up comedy routine. OK, so it was only 5 minutes long (I did it as a lightning talk) and the audience and content was heavily programmer centric, but even so it seemed to go down a treat. A few people asked me to post the “set” that I did, so here it is.

The content all comes from my own tweets between 2009 and 2013 (except for a couple of more recent ones). Whilst this is the majority of the elapsed time I’ve been on Twitter, it only accounts for half of my tweets so far. This is because I was tweeting less than 100 times per-month at the beginning whereas I’m well over 400 per-month these days. Who says I’m an addict. It also means there should be enough content to do another routine next year (you have been warned).

I’d like to believe that it’s all my own work but the phenomena that is Cryptomnesia suggests this likely won’t be the case. Even if many are my own original thoughts it’s very likely others have been there well before me. Still I hope that you find some originality somewhere in this batch of 30 or so quips and puns.

If you’re trying to recreate the atmosphere of the original event then you’ll need to deliver these in a deadpan manner.

“My wife bought me some jigsaws of famous computer scientists for Christmas. She asked how I was getting on. I said: it’s Turing complete.”

“I think Turing was a wicked mathematician and computer scientist. In fact I’d say he was da bombe.”

“Speaking of mathematicians, when they work-out do they focus on their abs?”

“Was the Tower of Pisa built using lean manufacturing?”

“I know agile is all the rage but I think the writing is on the wall for kanban boards.”

“Are cross-functional teams just a bunch of grumpy LISP programmers.”

“I’ve been writing more functional code lately. I recently tried a few numerical recipes with currying functions, but all I got was a NaN.”

“The recent census had a box marked ‘Religion’. So I put ‘TDD’.”

“Why are we surprised that Git developers are so fanatical when everything they do is dictated by a SHA?”

“I’m getting the hang of mocking. During the last code review I said ‘this is rubbish!’, ‘what were you thinking?’ and ‘are you an idiot?’”

“When I work from home I like to get the kids involved with my coding. I call it Au Pair Programming.”

“Just because it’s called code doesn’t mean it has to be cryptic.”

“If technical debt is taking shortcuts, does that make bad programmers loan sharks?”

“Our code is so bad we don’t say ‘here be dragons’, we say ‘here be weeping angels’ because every time you blink the code looks worse.”

“I blame Facebook for the quality of SQL produced by young developers. They’re obsessed with likes.”

“When I see ‘static’ used in multi-threaded code it makes my hair stand on end.”

“I like the actor model for handling concurrency, but I find it suboptimal due to the constant need to talk to their agents.”

“I’ve been refactoring my code towards a more single-entry/single-exit style. It worked out well in the beginning but now there’s less impact due to the law of diminishing returns.”

“Singletons are like onions, the moment you touch one you end up in tears.”

“Inexperienced programmers are like inexperienced swimmers, they rely too heavily on floats.”

“I’m not saying the C programming standard is loose but I reckon it should be called Subjective-C.”

“C++ comes with complexity guarantees. If you write C++ it’s guaranteed to be complex.”

“Our system has five-nines reliability. It usually works about 45% of the time.”

“When Sherlock Holmes talks about a three-pipe problem does he mean it requires grep, sed, awk and sort?”

“My daughter asked what ABBA stands for. I said 43,962.”

“Once I pulled into an overflow car park and found myself right back at the entrance.”

“I don’t understand the point of graph databases. There must be an easier way to draw a bar chart.”

“Isn’t it depressing that everything we create ends up in a folder called ‘bin’.”

“If a team mate tells you to use more lynx they mean you have a problem with body odour, not that you need to test you web site with a text-only browser.”

“If you’re going to write a résumé for a C++ job don’t forget to add your cv-qualifiers.”

“I’ve enlisted the help of Simon Cowell to help me manage my passwords. It’s called X-Factor authentication.”

“Our interfaces are less cohesive and more adhesive. Developers keep sticking new methods on the end.”

“Our codebase has so many try/catch blocks that it often feels like a game of throwns.”

“When Amazon start using drones to deliver parcels I’m going to mess with them by sticking a robots.txt on the front door.”