About semicolon

Wednesday, 13 April 2005

semicolon is about software, software development, the Internet, and you. Actually, there’s probably not much in it about you. It’s nothing personal.

Who runs semicolon?

semicolon is maintained by me, Bennett McElwee. I have been developing software for around 20 years, using many different technologies in varied environments, and I’ve learned a thing or two along the way. semicolon is now a useful place for me to keep some of my pearls of wisdom; perhaps it will be useful to you too.

My personal website is Bennettarium. Not much on software there, but it is perhaps more interesting and certainly more nicely designed. I run a number of other websites too; I leave finding them as an exercise for the reader.

For more on software, usability and all that, you can find me on Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, Stack Overflow, User Experience, Github, and a few other places on the Web.

profile for Bennett McElwee on Stack Exchange, a network of free, community-driven Q&A sites

Why “semicolon”?

A little while ago I worked as part of a startup mobile Internet applications company. Joanne said that since I was working at a sort of dot com company, I was a “dot commer”, pronounced “dot comma” in Australian. And of course “dot comma” is another name for — you guessed it — a semicolon.

After pointing this out, Joanne started calling me and my colleagues “semicolons”. How we laughed. And really, if you’re going to be named after a punctuation mark, you could do worse than the semicolon. (Slash, for example. Or colon. Ellipsis wouldn’t be too bad… but I digress.) Anyway, as you can see, there is some history behind this name.

Besides, all the good names were taken.


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  1. Semicolon is taken, too, but I’ll share if you’d like 🙂

  2. Thank you. There is more than enough room on the Web for us; the world needs all the semicolons it can get!

  3. been looking for a nice wordpress plugin site; glad i made it here!

  4. Love how you came to the Semicolon name.

  5. Yes @Kegan, it’s one of the enduring legacies of the dot com boom.

  6. Hi Bennett,

    I thought ; is the only symbol which has an end and at the same time it has a new beginning. So, At the end of something like a dark night a new morning, new dawn comes….that one I guessed. And you could be indicating something like that symbolically as Zen people do. Anyway your story behind the name was interesting…

    Best Wishes,

  7. Thanks for your plugin…

  8. @Dilip, thanks for your interpretation of the semicolon. And you’re welcome for the plugin.

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