Are the Linux Mint developers using sexist codenames?

In today's open source roundup: Have the Linux Mint developers picked a sexist codename for version 17.1? Plus: A review of PCLinuxOS 2014.08, and is Microsoft copying features from Linux in Windows 9?

Codenames are an expected part of software development, with a lot of open source projects using one kind of codename or another. But is it sexist to continually use female names for software projects? Beta News examines the latest use of a female name for version 17.1 of the Linux Mint distribution.

According to Betanews:

For some reason, people tend to name inanimate objects after women. Whether it's something like a gun, car or guitar, some kind of feminine moniker may be attached. Sure, it is arguably sexist, but I would argue it isn't, since a negative connotation is not attached. People love cars, guns and guitars; the name is a term of endearment.

While I love guns and cars as much as the next guy, I also love technology. One of my favorite hobbies is tinkering with Linux and Mint is a distribution I use often. This distro is usually named after women, such as Lisa, Olivia, and Nadia to name a few. Today, the Linux Mint team announces the newest codename: Rebecca.

More at Betanews
Linux Mint 17.1 sexist codename
Image credit: Betanews

I had to chuckle when I read this article. Really, do people have enough time on their hands to worry about stuff like this? It seems very silly to me to even notice it. But then again I have never paid much attention to codenames as quite a lot of them can be rather stupid. Remember all the cutesy animal names used by the Ubuntu developers? There have been so many that I've lost track of them at this point.

If there is any sexism on the part of the Linux Mint developers it's probably a kind of reverse sexism. Some might wonder why they haven't chosen any male codenames for Linux Mint. I have no idea why, nor do I really care. But I'm sure there are folks out there who might regard it as a bit misandric.

Maybe Linux Mint 18 should have the codename Bob or Steve or...some other male name? Hey, wait a about Jim? That would be a great codename! I can see it in the review headlines now: "Linux Mint 18 Jim rocks the open source world!" Are you listening, Linux Mint developers?

All kidding aside, I really don't care what developers use for codenames. Let them use male names, female names, animal names or some other kind of name. And I suspect that most people probably feel the same way. After all, the features and improvements in each software release are what we care about, not the informal naming conventions used by developers.

PCLinuxOS 2014.08 review

DistroWatch has a review of PCLinuxOS 2014.08.

According to DistroWatch:

In general, everything about PCLinuxOS was, in a word: good. The system installer worked well, the package manager worked well, the distribution ships with lots of great software and the default applications all seem to be popular and useful items. Performance was good and there were very few distractions while I was working.

The distribution has a lot of functionality, is friendly and has a conservative rolling release nature while means it can probably be run for a long time without re-installing it. If you haven't tried PCLinuxOS before I think you are missing out on a good experience.

More at DistroWatch
PCLinuxOS 2014.08 review
Image credit: DistroWatch
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