Engineer to English Translation Guide

A colleague of mine (thanks Carole!) remarked the other day how I should make a T-shirt with a translation guide that roughly equates what and engineer says with what they mean and/or what one can expect out of the next series of events. I thought this was a great idea, and came up with not one, but two T-shirts, which I present here for your amusement.

A brief note to any engineers who may be reading this: We love you guys. Really, we do. The way you think is part of what makes you great at your jobs. It also happens to be a source of endless amusement (and sometimes, frustration) on the part of non-engineers. Please take this in the spirit it was meant in and do not show up at my office with an Uzi. Kthxbai.

Engineer Translation Guide #2 zazzle_shirt

What the Engineer says

What you should think

“This should be working”

Oh shit…

“I’ve never seen that before…”

Strap in, you are in for a wild ride.

“That’s Interesting…”

Something is terribly, terribly wrong.
“I’ll be right back…”

You may never see them again.

“Can you keep that window up?”

See “That’s Interesting…”

“I’ll be right back, but can you keep that window up?”

Pack up and go home, you are done for the day.

“Oh yea, that’s really straightforward”

1000 lines of code, incoming!

“We can get that out in a few hours”

Multiply any time estimate by 12

What the Engineer says

What the Engineer means

“You appear to be the only one having the problem…”

You are an idiot.

“The build is broken”

You are the idiot that checked in bad code.

“That’s got to be it!”

I’m completely out of ideas, and if this doesn’t work, you’re screwed.

“I’m unable to reproduce this on my end…”

You are most likely an idiot

“But I don’t understand why it’s doing that…”

I’ve fixed the problem, but it’s shiny and I want to play with it some more.


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