Irritating Geek Nomenclature

A turn of a phrase that most geeks use and which is like fingernails on blackboard to me is “I live in …”. It’s always applied to something stupid and something undeserving of a life, usually a highly mundane application, as in “I live in Gmail” or “I live in BBEdit.” No you don’t or if you do you are a sad sad person. I’m not starting a campaign against it but it irks me, about as much as hearing the annoyingly cutesy “addy” used for “address”.

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Dave Slusher is a blogger, podcaster, computer programmer, author, science fiction fan and father. Member of the Podcast Hall of Fame class of 2022.

5 thoughts on “Irritating Geek Nomenclature”

  1. Ken Nelson says:


    The first time I came across “addy” was after doing a bunch of Google searches, and visiting SunSolve, to troubleshoot a problem with an ethernet interface on one of our servers. I came across one problem similar to mine; it contained the phrase “mac addy”, and the context of the article didn’t make it clear wtf a “mac addy” was. I was perhaps a little more boneheaded than usual that day as well . Anyhow, long story short, I got my problem solved, but several days elapsed before I figured out that “mac addy” was MAC address, or more properly, Ethernet address.


  2. mike dunn says:

    does “i live in a constant state of denial” count?

  3. mike dunn says:

    hey – you’re being sponsored by “first descent” – now that is cool dave (and dave and dave) 😉

  4. PJ Cabrera says:

    How about the useless litany of debates in tech:

    RSS versus Atom? GUI versus command-line? Vi versus Emacs? BSD versus GNU tools?

    I consider these even more annoying than stupid phrases.

  5. PJ Cabrera says:

    I only hear the word “addy” from cutesy friends, not from colleagues.

    I would snicker in someone’s face if they used “addy” in a work situation. Unless they were also a good friend, in which case I’ll make it a point of honor for the rest of the week to make fun of them and tease them about it until they stopped using it. 🙂

    As for “I live in …”, it is quite sad, indeed. What’s wrong with “I find this so useful I barely need another program for most of what I do in a day”? “I live in …” sounds like a phrase borrowed from someone because it seemed cool, and in the borrowing it’s lost all originality and value.

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