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(This is all the fault of a conversation with allonymist and yoctohedron.)

C: You are a paranoid schizophrenic who spends most of your time confused about which type you should be, convinced that blatantly false things are true because your extreme efficiency leaves no room for sensible error checking. Moreover your terseness encourages people to interact with you badly, providing incomplete and ambiguous instructions for which you nevertheless come up with a legal interpretation, even though most of the time it is completely nonsensical. People come to you because you promise them simplicity, not realising that below the surface you're a rat's nest of issues. In the end you are always abandoned for someone like C++ or Python.

Python: Python cares deeply about you and does its best to make your life easier. Python is willing to try new things to make you happy -- "Sure, I can do generators, if that's what you want" -- and really doesn't mind if you're seeing other languages on the side. It insists upon arranging the cupboard into strict rows, but you stop noticing after a while, and eventually you come to prefer your shelves organized this way. Your friends think this is weird until they start dating Python too.

Ruby: Your older sister is the most popular cheerleader in school, but she's kind of a slut. You think that maybe if you add more features, the boys will like you just as much.

PHP: You've seen what works for Ruby and you think it will work for you too, but you haven't figured out that lipstick doesn't go on your cheeks and you shouldn't brush your hair with a mascara wand.

C++: C++ has seen people in love, and thinks it has everything figured out. C++ thinks it loves you, but it errs on the side of being controlling when it thinks it's being concerned and caring.

Ada: You are far more flexible than C++, and know how to be strict and forgiving at the same time. However, your tendency to wear the bondage and discipline gear all the time, as opposed to when your lover asks you to bring it out, frightens people off. You need to learn to stop calling people "worm" and "slave" in front of their mothers.

Java: You try to be loving, but you were raised by a commune of 60 nervous women who have told you that everything you do is loving, even when it isn't. Your unhelpful behaviors have never been corrected and everything you do is subtly wrong and destructive.

JSP: You are Java's younger sister, working in a strip club to pay for your women's studies degree.

Perl: You're incredibly enthusiastic and you have five different ways of doing anything that anyone could possibly want to do. As a result, you tend to overwhelm people and you leave a bad impression on people who could otherwise benefit from knowing you. You promise people answers to all their questions, but you're not ready for a real relationship. You like to guess what people want, but tend to jump to conclusions. When other people would say "what, really?", you've already gotten out a ball-peen hammer and a tub of beeswax. Because of this, people find themselves speaking to you using a range of expressions and vocabulary even more limited than what they'd use for someone who didn't speak the language at all.

Smalltalk: Smalltalk won't meet you outside Smalltalk's apartment. Smalltalk says that if you really loved it, you wouldn't leave.

OCaml: You know yourself to be fast, smart, and extremely reliable. However, you look kind of funny and nobody really wants to talk to you. You spend most of your time sitting in a public library glaring at people, occasionally yelling "NOBODY HERE APPRECIATES MY GENIUS!" and getting kicked out.

Prolog: You are a deaf and blind synthaesthete, who experiences the world entirely through smells, each of which triggers expansive flurries of poetry and music in your mind. Certain problems are trivial for you, but nobody will ever understand the answers you give them, because your numbering system involves colors that cannot be perceived by humans. Prolog can sometimes have a good time with people, but it's hard for a person to stay with someone who only wants them for their ochre vibrato.

Lisp: Lisp cares about you, but really loves itself more than it will ever love you. Lisp thinks that it's the world's greatest lover, and it is a lot of fun, but it's completely blind to its own inadequacies. Watch out: it flies into a rage if it finds you've been seeing C on the side. Lisp swears up and down that it can be anything and anyone you want, and in a lot of ways it's right, but in the end, it's still Lisp.

Logo: Lisp's adorable 7-year-old niece who likes to play with her toy turtle. On casual conversation, she proves to be disturbingly worldly and well-informed. You resolve not to let your kids play around Lisp's house. Thinking about using Logo in any serious way makes you feel a bit dirty.

Visual Basic: You're a fifteen-year-old girl with her very own computer in her room, pinging random strangers on AIM and claiming to be a 23-year-old girl who wants to cyber with them. However, your efforts fail at convincing people, mostly because you aren't very imaginative and most of the things you're promising them are ideas you ripped off from other sources and changed slightly, leaving them less believable.

ASP.NET: As above, except you're a fifteen-year-old boy.

Objective C: You grew up in a cold and loveless home. Everything you know about love, you learned by listening to Smalltalk and Lisp's sex parties in the apartment next door. Now you have met a sweet young thing named Darwin, and you are eager to please.

Dylan: Sombody sat Lisp down and told it it was too clingy. Now it's bipolar.

Twisted: Twisted Python not only loves you, it loves everyone, in 10ms intervals, on demand. But once you learn to take turns, you don't notice the difference.

E: E is very clear about its hard limits, and there are a lot of them. It tells you up front what you're not allowed to do, and sometimes you end up forgetting what you can do without pissing it off.

lex/yacc: lex and yacc are those twins you have a one-night stand with every couple of years. In the intervening period, you forget all about the neat tricks they can do, and every time you meet up you end up learning them all over again. But they're really rather one-sided, and schizophrenic in the same way C is, so in the end it's good that they're not after you for a long-term relationship.

Haskell: Haskell is pretty, but always uses an elaborate range of prophylactic techniques. By the time you're all in place, the person you're with no longer resembles Haskell. If you've had other lovers, Haskell doesn't like many of the things that you may have come to enjoy doing with them. Haskell will pretend never to have heard of these things, and call you a pervert.

SML/NJ: You cannot take anything away from a relationship with SML/NJ that you did not bring with you. If you leave anything at SML/NJ's apartment when you break up, SML/NJ will leave it on your doorstep without ringing the bell.

Assembler: Assembler has no limits -- none whatsoever -- but you have to make it do what you want. It will not make a move to help you; assembler just lies there.

FORTRAN: FORTRAN isn't a real relationship. Telling people you're happy with FORTRAN is like telling people you'll be happy taking care of your cats for the rest of your life and don't really need another person.


( 134 comments — Leave a comment )
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Mar. 5th, 2006 01:40 am (UTC)
SQL has been your friend through all your relationships. Because of this, SQL remembers more about you than you do about yourself. That time C went on a PCP binge and smashed a stack of your records? SQL remembers. That time that Haskell called you a degenerate for rearranging your bedroom? SQL remembers. SQL sat up with you after you broke up with Java, and when you decided that you needed to be more strict with yourself about seeing Perl.

Of course, you'd never actually want to date SQL. Sure, SQL is a good listener and gives you a shoulder to cry on, but the two of you have spend so much time in these roles that neither of you is really equipped to be there for the other full-time. If that weren't enough, there's also the problem that SQL is a bit homelier than you can deal with: whenever possible, you try to talk to SQL over the phone.

Occasionally SQL gets drunk and calls you "my best friend." You suspect that SQL might have a sad, pathetic crush on you, but you know that SQL will never act on it. SQL is well aware of SQL's inadequacies.
Feb. 17th, 2011 10:41 pm (UTC)
This is the best. I peed a little.
Mar. 5th, 2006 03:58 am (UTC)
Postscript was never really meant to have a relationship with you. Postscript really relates much better with machines. Yes, you can get Postscript to do what you need (though mainly in specific areas), but it's such a geek you need to phrase everything in some weird convoluted jargon (if I weren't a Klingon speaker myself I'd say that Postscript is a geek who only speaks Klingon). Postscript will never relate with you like it does with machines. Only a tireless machine could really spell out all the excruciating detail that Postscript needs to perform any really big task.

Postscript can usually be found hanging around places where you go on dates, and can be helpful for running some errands--usually if you get someone else to ask.
Feb. 4th, 2009 04:01 am (UTC)
Re: Postscript
perhaps lojban instead of klingon?
Re: Postscript - seqram - Feb. 4th, 2009 04:46 am (UTC) - Expand
Mar. 5th, 2006 05:58 am (UTC)
Javascript: A 17 year old gang-banger wannabe who thinks he's all worldly and sophisticated because he hangs out near the real players. Unfortunately, what he actually knows is exactly enough to get himself into trouble, and to take anyone foolish enough to get involved with him down with him. Social services workers keep arranging to train him to do new jobs, but his bad attitude and lousy organizational skills soon sabotage every task he's given.

AJAX: Javascript's most recent work-training placement, during which he met his latest girlfriend, XML. They have since been locked in a violent, drug-fueled codependent relationship. Even their few friends have been driven away by the couples' incessant screaming fights. XML keeps going back and forth between Javascript's apartment and her mother's house, but doesn't seem willing to end the relationship.
Mar. 5th, 2006 01:26 pm (UTC)
I wondered how quickly people will start going all defensive over their favorite programming languages, giving their own, "more accurate" interpretations.

As someone whose own language of choice was slammed long and hard, I just have to say "bravo" and go back to work. My language has recently been away to finish her degree, and now I feel I can hardly understand what she's saying. I hope she won't dump me.
Mar. 5th, 2006 03:43 pm (UTC)
I'm yet another utter stranger who got passed a link to this and laughed a lot. Thanks!
Mar. 5th, 2006 09:11 pm (UTC)
how about Lua and Befunge? :P
Mar. 5th, 2006 09:13 pm (UTC)
Pascal: Pascal was there for you through college, and you learnt things from her. She taught you how relationships could work, but it all ended badly when you tried to make her do things she didn't understand.

Oberon: When you broke up with Pascal, you found yourself drunk, and in bed with her room mate. It all ended badly when Oberon made you do things you didn't understand. You worry that you only slept with Oberon because he looked a bit like Smalltalk.
Mar. 6th, 2006 02:50 am (UTC)
Sometimes, when you're calling SQL, T-SQL picks up the phone. You've often mistaken their voices over the line, which can occasionally be embarrassing. Phone conversations with T-SQL are, after all, a little creepy. She wants you to know that she can do anything that your good friend SQL would do for you, and more. After you hang up you always pause to wonder why you've never bothered to meet T-SQL in person.

T-SQL's West Coast accent makes you think of Hollywood -- she sounds like fame and power and money. So you spend a little more time talking with her than you normally do with SQL. In a weak moment you ask T-SQL for a favor you know you can never repay, and she complies with an eagerness that's almost condescending. If you understood exactly how much the need for power was a part of T-SQL's basic nature, maybe you'd have been a little more wary.

One day you wake up and get a frantic call from your best friend, Dabon. You manage to calm him down enough for him to tell you Haitian pirates have kidnapped your parents. The only evidence found at their home was a note signed by T-SQL, full of apologies. She says never meant to hurt anyone, least of all you, but she had no choice. They had "leverage," whatever that means.

T-SQL calls you a week later to apologize again, and even though you can tell by her voice that she's sincere, you don't really care. You casually let it slip that you've had more than one chance to talk to PL/SQL recently. At the mention of her older sister's name, T-SQL's voice suddenly turns cold. She starts to rant, calling you fascist, communist, anti-Life. The call ends with a smacking sound as she slams a phone onto its receiver somewhere out in the world. You never hear from her again.
Mar. 6th, 2006 07:35 am (UTC)
HTML: Rainman-esque idiot savant who has been placed in advanced college classes as a teenager. As all savants, you do you one thing really really well, and are utterly incapable of anything that requires you to move beyond that. However, your status as a young genius - albeit with emotional problems - has capaulted you to international stardom, so even though you aren't really capable of a relationship, you never seem to be without a date.
Mar. 6th, 2006 01:05 pm (UTC)
Interesting that some languages are described as the subjects in the relationship (e.g. c, ruby, php), while others are the objects (e.g. python, c++, lisp)...
Mar. 7th, 2006 06:54 pm (UTC)
That's mainly a function of who wrote it. Mine tend to be about the programming language as a person you might date; M. and Y. prefer addressing the programming language directly. (Also, I tried pretty hard to keep mine gender-unspecified.)
Mar. 6th, 2006 09:40 pm (UTC)
yet ANOTHER random link recipient here... just wanted to say this kicks much ass!
Mar. 7th, 2006 01:18 am (UTC)
She was wearing nothing but black leather and steel, and you knew it was probably a bad idea, but you just had to see what she was like. She hit you in the face, but you liked it, despite yourself. When she stormed off, you followed her like a dog and before sunset you were limping out of her appartment with handcuff burns on your wrists. You won't ever see her again, but you might mention the crazy few hours over a poker game some day.
Mar. 7th, 2006 04:13 am (UTC)
Re: Brainfuck
The part of your relationship with brainfuck that you find hardest to explain is the way that for all your troubles, all you got was permission to squeeze your own butt. Using a pair of salad tongs.
Mar. 7th, 2006 06:31 am (UTC)
Dear God. I am an utter user with zilch in the way of programming knowledge.

In no way does this detract from the funny.
Mar. 7th, 2006 11:06 am (UTC)
*laughs outloud* I'm in the middle of an Smalltalk project, and the description of it cracked me up.
Mar. 7th, 2006 12:12 pm (UTC)
The Stanford Artificial Intelligence Language
SAIL: This gal's been around a while. When she first started dating she didn't like leaving the safety of her local suburb but all that was to change. She believed in Tarot and thought everything you did meant something significant. She would leap in ecstasy when you got messy or told her a carrot was like a banana for reasons other both being fruit.

She would take note of what was going on and knew which band was playing that night in town. She even let you cut in mid-sentence. Be warned tho, she could quote you word for word in context and she had an odd inclination to root through your garbage collection. She taught you words you never head before or thought wholesome.

As she grew up she became very social and eventually slept with a half the football teams in more than one university and her rep faded into the background. She died as an accountant.

Her daughter MAINSAIL grew up to be much more nimble and attracted many artists and engineers during her teens. Unlike her mother, she didn't flare out with age and is still remembered for being a witty, intelligent woman who can teach you things those kids on myspace have no idea about.
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