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Racist Programs and Assaulting Servers

December 30, 2013

Best of 2013. This is the 2nd most popular blog entry from last year. I explain why it’s not a good idea to have programmers name things that customers will see.

Rodney M Bliss

“The Master Domain will control the entire organization. An email system never has more than a single Master.”

“So, where do the user accounts reside?”

“They all go into various Slave Domains. You can have as many Slaves as you want.”

Dead silence. . .


Masters and Slaves

The year was 1989 and along with other members of WordPerfect’s elite email support team, I was being briefed on the architecture of the next version of our email program. (WordPerfect Office 3.0.) The developer who was explaining the design to us honestly had no idea why we were stunned to silence. At WordPerfect, like many software companies, programmers didn’t talk to customers. That was the job of Support.

In software development, especially in the late 1980’s a “master/slave” relationship was well understood and really not noteworthy. It simply defined a one-to-many relationship, where the “one” was the dominate system. However…

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