Tag Archives: GitHub

GitHub’s Silly Master Plan

The kids at GitHub have tested positive for Mad Woke Disease (MWD) – again!

The last outbreak was over codes of conduct this time it’s about naming Git repository master branches! If you’re wondering what’s a Git master branch and why infantile wokesters are acting out I envy you. Perhaps you should stop reading now. MWD is a pathetic mental illness. It robs sufferers of perspective and judgement and often induces inane bouts of vacuous virtue signaling.

Still here – you were warned – let’s dig into the tiresome technicalities.

GitHub is a major website that hosts tens of thousands of Git code repositories. Code repositories are specialized databases that track program component changes. The most commonly tracked components are source code files but other binary components like image files are also tracked. Code repositories make it possible for widely dispersed programmers to collaborate on large projects without irreversibly wreaking each other’s work. Hence, GitHub and it’s competitors, matter to software developers.

So what’s this master branch?

Program code evolves like living organisms and just like relationships between organisms are shown on “tree of life” diagrams program relationships are displayed on repository branch diagrams. Complex programs have pedigrees that look like inbred royal family trees.

Images from: David’s Commonplace Book and endjin blog.

If you look closely at the left side of the previous diagram you’ll notice that the line of green dots beside the inbreeding graphic is labeled “master”.

I know what you’re thinking. How did white supremacists infiltrate the woke thinking denizens of GitHub and embed racially loaded terms like “master” in code repositories? Obviously, wherever the word “master” occurs it’s referring to slavery and the brutal suppression of people of color1 because words have only one meaning and context is always irrelevant. To atone for their terminological sins GitHub is planning to rename the “master” branch something currently innocuous like “main”.

With all the shit plugging global toilets why did GitHub’s plumbers choose this silly turd to flush?

The use of the word “master” is a longstanding Git convention. Unlike other branches the master branch cannot be renamed. This is a minor annoyance and I support efforts to allow other words but having a fixed name for the master branch has advantages. It simplifies automatic program builds as they don’t have to determine what the master branch is called today. If the master branch is forcibly renamed it will break thousands of builds all over the world. Think of it as a digital black lives matter riot.

Here are a few rhetorical questions:

  • If the “master” branch is renamed “main” will it fix racism?

  • Will renaming the master branch demonstrably improve a single black life?

  • What will we call Chess Grandmasters2?

  • Must we rename Masters Degrees to Main Degrees?

  • What about the Master’s Golf Tournament?

  • Or masterclasses?

And, it goes without saying, that we can never master anything, in the sense of high achievement, ever again because because it’s clearly woke racist3.


  1. “People of color” is woke but the transposition “colored people” is not! The improper use of word order or pronouns is now a capital offense. First time offenders will be let off with a Twitter beating but if you persist, like some nagging people of vagina, it’s straight to the burning pyre for you.↩︎

  2. Contrary to widespread woke opinion “Grandmaster” is not a KKK rank.↩︎

  3. Woke racism should not be confused with real racism.↩︎

JOD Update: J 8.02 QT/JHS/64 bit Systems

JOD LogoI have pushed out a JOD update that makes it possible to run the addon on J 8.02 systems. In the last eight months a QT based J IDE has been developed that runs on Linux, Windows and Mac platforms. To maintain JOD’s compatibility across all versions of J from 6.02 on I had to tweak a few verbs.

The only significant changes are how JOD interacts with various J system editors.  I have tested the system on Windows  J 6.02, J 7.01, J 8.02, and Mac J 7.01 systems. I expect it will behave on 32 and 64 bit Linux systems from J 7.01 on, but I have yet to test these setups. My hardware budget limits my ability to run common variants of Windows, Linux and Mac systems.

JOD is still not complete; that’s why the version number has not been bumped past 1.0.0. The missing features are noted in the table of contents of jod.pdf, (also available in the joddocument addon), with the suffix “NIMP,” which means “not implemented.”  I will fill in these blanks as I need them. Most of the time JOD meets my needs so don’t hold your breath.

If you want to make your own additions to JOD the program and documentation source is available on GitHub. Just follow the links and enjoy.

As a last note: I will be at the J Conference in Toronto (July 24 and 25, 2014) where I will be giving a short presentation and handing out a few hardcopy versions of the JOD manual to one or two JOD fans.

Jacks Repository

The other day I attempted to browse a J script described in an old blog post only to find that my employer’s network monkeys had blocked the file sharing service. I’ve railed about IT control freaks in the past. They will not rest until it’s impossible to do useful work. I fumed and grumbled until I perceived a bigger problem. I have so many references to program code in this blog that it’s getting tedious tracking them down. Wouldn’t it be nice if my hacks were neatly organized in one coherent repository?

Let me introduce jacks. jacks, or “J-hacks”, organizes the J related code referenced in this blog into a single GitHub repository. Most of the scripts in jacks are one-offs but some have proven so useful that it makes sense to store them in a repository and track changes. From now on jacks will be the first place to look for code from this blog. You pull the contents of jacks into a new Git repository with the commands:

git init
git remote add jacks https://github.com/bakerjd99/jacks.git
git pull jacks master

It took me a few moments to settle on the name “jacks.” I considered “jokes” because programmers often take their code too seriously and “jocks” because J programmers are wild out of control convention eschewing code jocks but jacks won out when I remembered the refrain “jack be nimble, jack be quick, jack jump over” whatever coding problem is pissing you off.