The Code Fairy is a fictional spirit said to eat semicolons and curly brackets from computer source code. The Code Fairy is an example of folklore mythology which non-programmers know is fiction, but which is sometimes presented by computer programmers as fact, as a way of explaning how a computer program stops working after compiling it, without altering the source code.
It is well known that the Windows code fairy has the largest wings but cannot fly. The Apple code fairy has the most beautiful wings but they are so small that everyone believes they don't exist. The Linux code fairy looks different depending on who kissed it last. The UNIX code fairy looks like grumpy and old. The SCO-Linux code fairy looks like a lawyer and pursues anyone who kisses the Linux code fairy. Older versions include the OS/2 code fairy that looked like anything you wanted it to look like, did anything you wanted it to do but weighed more than a Dump-truck, eats everything you own and disappears after tackling Merlin. The stunningly dull and fractious DOS Code fairy on the other hand would let you go all the way on the first date but leave you feeling like you just french kissed Your Mom. Perhaps least missed of all is the cute little CP/M code fairy that fucked like a Tiger but would scream out PIP!, PIP! at the point of Orgasm.
There have also been cases of mischevious entities in "real computers", for example George was infested with Trolls.
Varieties of software
The affected software does not include programs written in assembler, which is more subject to bit rot due to its age and smaller size. Other immune varieties include Visual Basic, due to its lack of edible punctuation, and scripts which have a short life span and often end up in a bit bucket before reaching maturity -- especially on websites, which are plagued by Shub-Internet and link rot. This is disputed by traditionalists, who attribute the various immunities to lack of imagination. XHTML was an attempt to protect source code by ensuring that it was always placed within protective punctuation with sharp corners (see also Caltrop). When wikis replaced pointy puctuation with square brackets, it was found that vandals thrived on the new websites, while visiting trolls usually returned to their normal feeding grounds on Usenet and other sites where punctuation was only used for emoticons.
When the age and declining popularity of the C programming language threatened to endanger the Code Fairy, groups of developers gathered at conferences and in committees to clap hands and state their beliefs, ensuring that semicolons and curly braces remained in languages such as C++ and C#. However, many languages in the curly brace family chose to avoid compilers completely, proving that there's more than one way to generate software problems.
Another Code Fairy is the entity responsible for delivering software enhancements that are requested by users and managers and make demands beyond current technology and resource constraints. She is often described as pert or agile. Project managers and software often use the Code Fairy to resolve "scheduling conflicts". Her natural enemies include the Scope creep, who often lurks alongside the Critical path. The Critical chain is sometimes used to restrain those who attempt to invoke her talents.
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