It’s time to freshen things up a bit here. Out with the old musty ambiguous “Momentary Gouts of Reason”, in with the new more specific and delightfully irreverent “Windows Live Quantum Mechanics”.
Why “Quantum Mechanics”?
It was late at night, several hours into chasing down a weird cross-domain communication bug in our Contacts web control. Finally, finally, finally, I nailed the sucker. In the fleeting moment of bug-fix rapture (between those momentary gouts of reason), I began giggling hysterically. I was writing up a description of the bug fix and realized that what I had just written about moving bits across domain boundaries could have been lifted directly from a textbook description of quantum mechanics (from the inside blurb of the dust jacket, more likely). With a visual of herding cats stuck in my head, it occurred to me that a lot of what I do here on the Windows Live developer platform team is coax stubborn little bits to migrate through impenetrable browser barriers, sort of like quantum particles tunneling through matter. Now you see it, now you don’t. Oh, look! It’s over there.
The quantum tunneling metaphor stuck. The “mechanics” part is just a plain old pun. For subatomic particle research, quantum mechanics means the physical motion and interactions of stuff. For web development, mechanics are the guys and gals who change the oil in your car. Mash the two together and you get silly visuals like subatomic monkey wrenches (where did I put that?), secret mesonic societies with fermion handshakes, and Kool-Aid flavored quarks. Leptons and hadrons and quarks! Oh, my!
Is “Quantum Mechanic” your real title at Microsoft?
Of course not. Well, not yet anyway. But it’s absolutely going onto my next batch of business cards! My actual title is now “Principal SDE”, a by-product of a division-wide HR retitling exercise a few months ago. It’s such a relief to be rid of that awful “PM” title!
Time to get back to stirring up trouble in Silverlight space. All for the greater good, of course!