Regarding Geeks and Their Nomenclature

October 23, 2007

My friend Todd just blogged about geeks and naming things and I was going to comment on it but then realized my comment was almost, if not actually, post-worthy unto itself.

I find the naming of servers and computers kind of fascinating, though I’m not particularly good at it.

Here at Kavi, we’re all sushi (hirame, chum, maguro, ebi, tako…)

At Portland State Uni., we were also Norse mythology for the big mainframes, but not the clever kind as you see in Todd’s post (we DID have an Odin).

In grad school in England, all of the computers in the labs were Simpsons characters. When homesick I always used “Maggie” because that’s my sister’s name.

My laptop is Millican, which is named after the place I got married. Mr. Pencil’s laptop (well, series of laptops–he always names them the same) is “Thinky,” which I thought was immensely clever until I realized it was a ThinkPad. It kind of devolves from there. My dual G5 is named “Whir” because of no particular reason other than the notion of whirring, and our Mini is sadly named Gantenbein, which is the street we used to live on. That wasn’t very clever.

We used to name all of our workstations at work, back when we could use them as subdomains at Kavi (i.e. no DMZ). Back then I named everything after countenances. That is: and Brett’s machine here is named meat. That’s kind of funny.

What’s yours called?


  1. El Gray says:

    Grammaton. It’s black, and was purchased during my “fixated on Equilibrium” phase.

    Machine in college was 5150.

    I like naming computers. Previous workplace’s servers had Marvel comics character names. Current ones at Giant Corporate Entity have random names whose pattern I have not discerned.

  2. autumn says:

    it’s funny. i am SO all about naming inanimate objects; my cars (Datsy, Opal, and Betsy to list a few), my guitar is Livingston (it’s made by Seagull), my camera is Snappy-Doo, my phone is Phonelope, but my computer has no name.

    Mac, i suppose?

  3. Brett says:

    Actually, I used to name my workstations after AI computers in the Neuromancer series of books. My box at home is still named ‘Wintermute’. Meat came about after one day having to build my own computer at work out of the carcasses of other abandoned workstations. A new dell was about $1000 at the time. I estimate the cost of ‘meat’ at around $8,000.

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