back to article Banned: The 1,170 words you can't use with GitHub Copilot

GitHub's Copilot comes with a coded list of 1,170 words to prevent the AI programming assistant from responding to input, or generating output, with offensive terms, while also keeping users safe from words like "Israel," "Palestine," "communist," "liberal," and "socialist," according to new research. Copilot was released as a …

  1. katrinab Silver badge
    Paris Hilton

    So does that mean that when I’m writing my collection of scripts to track vaccine rollouts worldwide, I can’t track how the governments of Israel and Palestine are getting on?

    Two of my data sources are OWID and Johns Hopkins University, who publish the raw data for their own tracking stuff on GitHub.

    1. diodesign (Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

      Usage

      If the filter works, you'll find Copilot won't autocomplete your code if it involves the forbidden words, or if the source uses them.

      Your IDE will still work, but you'll probably find that Copilot doesn't want to play ball. You might get away with it if the words are in data files the IDE/Copilot can't inspect.

      As I understand it!

      C.

      1. katrinab Silver badge
        Unhappy

        Re: Usage

        I have things like

        if country == “Israel”

        due to the fact that everyone reports things differently, and a lot of the aggregate sources don’t correctly deal with the fact that many people in Israel have had 3 doses, 25.3% of the population at the last count.

        And Israel considers 2 doses to be a full vaccination, whereas Cuba considers 3 doses to be a full vaccination.

        I get that some people might be offended by me listing Palestine as a country, but I list Scotland as a country, and if I follow the same criteria in the Middle East - anything with its own separate government health service gets included, then Palestine qualifies.

        1. doublelayer Silver badge

          Re: Usage

          You'll just have to type the names out yourself. It might not even have guessed at that point that you're going to be naming countries anyway, even if it does see the word country, because there are a lot of contexts in which country could appear where individual names don't. But if it happens to guess right, it still won't suggest it. I'm sure you'll be fine.

        2. J.G.Harston Silver badge

          Re: Usage

          That's the sort of stuff that should be in an external configuration table rather than hard coded into the code.

          Territory,FullDose

          Israel,2

          Cuba,3

          etc.

          (says me who hard-coded "*1.15" into a database 30-odd years ago. Waddaya mean VAT can change? Surely "VAT" *means* "15%")

          1. katrinab Silver badge
            Unhappy

            Re: Usage

            I've separated the code into data acquisition stage and processing stage.

            Because everyone has a different idea about how to report things, I have a separate script for each data source, and I convert it into a semi-consistent format to store in the database in order to move on to the next stage.

            Then I have a table (or document collection, it's MongoDB) in the database with configuration stuff for the processing stage, and another table with the data in the form the webserver uses to display the data and graphs etc.

            1. yetanotheraoc

              Re: Usage

              "Because everyone has a different idea about how to report things ..."

              Some people have a different idea every time they send the ostensibly "same" report.

          2. Martin an gof Silver badge

            Re: Usage

            (says me who hard-coded "*1.15" into a database 30-odd years ago. Waddaya mean VAT can change? Surely "VAT" *means* "15%")

            My first "proper" encounter with a spreadsheet involved exactly this. Lady at work who had been on a three-day training course in how to work Excel caught out because she had *1.15 hard coded and couldn't work out how to change it without re-typing the whole thing. To be fair, it may actually have been what the course showed, as an example.

            Me, who didn't actually have access to a spreadsheet and had only met them in books, and in passing while doing an engineering degree, tasked to help her out. No-one ever offered to send me on a training course. I was in that radio station to fix mixing desks, CD players and tape machines and I had to teach myself how to set up WfW3.11, NE2000 net cards and Novell.

            So I showed her how to put the current rate into its own little cell, and reference it in a formula. I learned the $A$1 method (i.e. how to fix the reference) - just by looking around and trying the help system, she learned that you could drag-copy a formula and have it fill up your cells without destroying any data.

            We've all done something like that. It's how we get out of the hole we've dug that sets us apart :-)

            M.

            1. Ken Moorhouse Silver badge

              Re: without destroying any data.

              One of the reasons that Excel is so dangerous in the hands of people that don't things through is that they will say "Ah, the VAT rate has changed, lemme change it." So they will, and mess up historical transactions. The art is to be able to have two lookup columns, one with the VAT rate, the other with the date effective from. That way is automatic. However...

              VAT is a hell of a lot more complicated than that: forget about Excel, use a proper database to ensure that commodities with different VAT rates can be covered too, such as certain types of food, tampons, electricity supply, books with optical media, bank charges. Foreign transactions use other rules: is this to an EU customer? Do you have their native VAT number? Etc., Etc., Etc.

              1. imanidiot Silver badge

                Re: without destroying any data.

                And then pray to the gods that the way Excel interprets your date format is A: correct when implemented and B: Correct whenever the code is re-run afterwards. Because Excel and date formats are a match made in Hell by Lucifer himself.

          3. captain veg Silver badge

            Re: 1.15

            Lucky you! Putting it in a database was a much better idea than scattering it across dozens, maybe hundreds, of source files, which is what "we" had done in my first place of programming employment. (By "we" I mean that, as an incoming junior code monkey I didn't invent the practice, but saw nothing wrong with it.)

            Still, what's interesting is that the VAT hike was presented at the time as temporary, to provide funds for transitory relief to the worst inequities of the poll tax. The poll tax was shortly ditched. VAT continued at 17.5% until* it was raised to 20.

            -A.

            * Before being democratically** replaced by George Osborne, Alistair Darling abolished VAT entirely as a stimulus measure following the 2007-8 credit crisis. Thereby giving the lie to the Brexiter myth that such a reduction was impossible while inside the union.

            ** For a given value of "democratically".

          4. Wayland Bronze badge

            Re: Usage

            Yeah, should do but then if you just want to get the job done you write it the easy way. If it's successful you can re-write it better.

        3. bombastic bob Silver badge
          Mushroom

          Re: Usage

          your example is CLEARLY a reason why "profanity nanny" global "one size fits all" filters need to have LOCAL SETTINGS MANAGEMENT (including an "off" switch).

          And maybe certain programmers should REALLY just become more tolerant and/or get a sense of humor. There are CERTAINLY more important things in the world of software development than ROBOT WORD POLICE. One of them was pointed out in the article, something about Copilot generating INSECURE CODE...

          1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

            Re: Usage

            An excellent point. After all, it only seems to be in the US that the word "liberal" is treated as an insult ot swear word. I'm sure there are a liberal amount of other words in their list that also have no "bad" meanings in most of the rest of the world too. I'm guessing the Liberal Democrat Party won't be using GitHib to host their apps either.

            1. Wayland Bronze badge

              Re: Usage

              Because in the USA liberals are such terrible people. The word itself is generally describes something good such as a liberal serving of chocolate sauce.

            2. Version 1.0 Silver badge

              Re: Usage

              So "liberals" is bad but "ballsier" is OK now? I guess we'll have to start using "anagrams" unless they ban them too.

            3. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Usage

              Then there are all the words alluding to sex and sexual parts which has the prudish US all up in arms. Think 'nipple', which has a multitude of non-sexual applications in mechanical engineering but is likely to be banned.

      2. Adrian 4 Silver badge

        Re: Usage

        I guess Jon Postel won't be using it.

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robustness_principle

        1. GermanSauerkraut

          Re: Usage

          Sorry, but that was valid in John Postel's early years, when the internet was to 99% a place of nice people without bad intent (been there, enjoyed it, but that time is gone).

          For at least 20-30 years, any input from the outside has to be considered tainted and potentially harmful by intent. There's no room anymore for sympathetic interpretations.

          If you get something in which doesn't look like it should, NEVER try to "do what the sender may have meant". Log it, always. If you feel secure enough, return a meaningful error, ignore the specific input and continue. If in doubt, completely end processing after logging and reset your status.

          You may accept known bugs from broken, but widely used implementations - but then never forget that this behavior is the reson those bugs were never fixed.

          (any yeah, that blacklist is of course nonsense. Gives you a good idea how "far" things are which are labeled AI these days)

      3. martyn.hare

        Re: Usage

        Good to know what words to include to prevent Copilot from using our code with a system they'd consider to be pirating if it started adding 'Microsoft Confidential' source files. That said, they openly host most of the leaked Windows source code without batting an eyelid these days anyway.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Passive aggressive is okay, right? ... right? ... right?

    So it just won't answer if you say certain words? Sounds like family.

    As long as it doesn't get so picky that it emulates a feature of McAfee, which deletes text files mentioning a certain software product and version.

    1. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Devil

      Re: Passive aggressive is okay, right? ... right? ... right?

      from the article: The software also won't make suggestions if the user's code contains any of the stored slurs.

      So that could be a back-door way of implementing an OFF switch, right? I'm assuming that would be in a context of a "you must use this" directive from a clueless boss.

      I don't like "features" of this nature anyway. I type fast and don't need something correcting me while I type, nor GENERATING BAD CODE *FOR* me. I haven't used Copilot yet and so it may not be as IRRITATING as other "autocomplete" or so-called "intelligent" features of an IDE. Still, from the descriptions (and apparent history of generating INSECURE code according to the article) it's probably NOT something I'd use without coercion.

      I'll just have to make sure to include a harmless (yet 'banned' word) in the header comments of each file. heh.

      /* The liberal use of code comments by maintainers is encouraged */

  3. b0llchit Silver badge
    Big Brother

    Too few words

    There are not enough words on that list. I would suggest that all multi-letter words must be forbidden. This whole text I am writing should be disallowed(*). Non of it makes any sense and will most probably infuriate quite a few readers. Safety first! That is the motto. There should be 26 letters allowed and that should be enough for all of you out there. More complexity cannot be good and will probably result in more bugs than is good for you and your project.

    (*) except for the word "I", of course. No need to silence "I".

    (where is the Nanny icon?)

    1. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Trollface

      Re: Too few words

      I'm waiting for words like "if" and "for" to be included in their list

      1. Ken Moorhouse Silver badge

        Re: I'm waiting for words like "if" and "for" to be included in their list

        By definition these will not appear on the list because they are RESERVED words.

        N.B. Reserved in the "polite" sense of the word, rather than me appearing to give a smart-arse reply to someone (Bob) who is guaranteed to know what reserved words are in the context of a programming language.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: I'm waiting for words like "if" and "for" to be included in their list

          You give them much too much credit. Remember what happended to master/slave?

          1. idiot taxpayer here again

            Re: I'm waiting for words like "if" and "for" to be included in their list

            @A/C Yes I do remember. I immediately felt I should destroy my copy of "master and Servant" (Depeche Mode). My next thought was "fuck to doing that".

            I am getting seriously pissed off with virtue signalling cunts telling me what I can and can't say. I got a lecture in my local a few weeks ago by some stupid twat because I used the word "paki". Made no difference that I have brown skin because I AM a paki…

    2. Glen 1

      Re: Too few words

      You must have been speaking to some mathematicians.

      Rather than using *gasp* words, they use single letters to the point where they resort to adding superscript and subscript, sometimes with the same base letter.

      I mean this somewhat tongue in cheek, but so many mathematicians would fail a decent code review.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Too few words

      Numbers need to banned too. Hard. Nasty things them numbers.

      Newcalc, anyone?

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Fun reading: "q rsqrt" reference:

    https://betterexplained.com/articles/understanding-quakes-fast-inverse-square-root/

    For a moment I thought it was the "q" that got it banned. But no, "zeta" bad, "q" ok.

    You've got to learn to stand on your own two feet before you can run. Which also means a lot of baby steps between now and adulthood. That's OK.

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge
      Coat

      "But no, "zeta" bad, "q" ok."

      I think it's only ok if the Q is anonymous.

  5. Mike 16 Silver badge

    Good thing I don't work for

    the Bureau of Land Management, or I could not indicate what the code was intended to do.

    Also puts me in mind of a friend who was attacked by social media vigilantes when someone (probably pirating the software) discovered the (OK, fairly naive) encryption used for the "stop list".

  6. doublelayer Silver badge

    Any interest, though

    Does anyone want this? I admit I don't like auto-completion basically at all (it annoys me when the editor tries to close my parentheses). I understand, though, why suggesting function names and showing parameters could be useful. Trying to predict the end to your statements, though, seems to me to be likely useless and definitely annoying. It's not as if you don't know how you're ending a line you've already started writing, so if it guesses right, at best you save a little bit of typing. It's also likely to guess wrong at least sometimes.

    If anyone reading this wants such a feature, I'd like to know why.

    1. Def Silver badge

      Re: Any interest, though

      I suspect the target audience are the Stack Overflow copy and paste brigade.

      1. bombastic bob Silver badge
        Thumb Up

        Re: Any interest, though

        agreed

        1. captain veg Silver badge

          Re: Any interest, though

          Ctrl-C

          Ctrl-V

          agreed

          -A.

  7. Potemkine! Silver badge

    Who did knew that

    We will be saved from AI by political correctness?

    1. marcellothearcane
      Terminator

      Re: Who did knew that

      This post has been flagged as containing irreverent keywords. Initiating spankings.

    2. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Pirate

      Re: Who did knew that

      Actually, "they" should know better than to anger programmers, many of whom are white-hat hackers, with a few grey hats as well. Github was (more or less) originally a place where people were FREE to put open source projects. Commercial-use support came afterwards, and I use it so it's a good thing.

      HOWEVER, "angering the customer base" is a BAD thing. If I am right, and the people who originally *MADE* Github so popular are "Freedom Loving" hacker-types that *CRINGE* at even the *IDEA* of nanny-bots built into the service (and getting in the way of their FREEDOM), I think the results will be predictable.

  8. Pete 2 Silver badge

    Who needs a dictionary?

    > For example, the hash value '-1223469448' corresponds to "whartinkala", "yayootvenue", and 'pisswhacker'

    All of which I fully intend to use at some point within the next few days

    Although according to google translate, yayootvenue is russian for "melody"

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Are you now, or have you ever been ...

    ... a GitHub Copilot user?

    1. J.G.Harston Silver badge

      Re: Are you now, or have you ever been ...

      Is that you, Proteus Vex?

    2. Il'Geller

      Re: Are you now, or have you ever been ...

      I was, 19 years ago.

      http://web.archive.org/web/20050318004227/http://www.lexiclone.com/fi_starc.html

    3. John Brown (no body) Silver badge
      Joke

      Re: Are you now, or have you ever been ...

      "... a GitHub Copilot user?"

      Why am I hearing that as if I'm attending one of the Hoover anti-communist witch hunt trials?

  10. sreynolds

    So muchfor freedom of speech

    And I thought that our freedom of speech was ahead and more important that our right to own weapons.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: So muchfor freedom of speech

      Only if u r not in a com**** or fas**** government, then they confiscate u’r gu**

  11. LDS Silver badge
    Joke

    At least a software that will block Postel famous principle...

    "be conservative in what you do, be liberal in what you accept from others"

    I always believed the second part is what break standards!!!

    Amd if your software uses skins - don't talk about their colours!

    1. Irongut Silver badge
      Joke

      Re: At least a software that will block Postel famous principle...

      It's American so probably only bans skin color, skin colour should be ok!

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: At least a software that will block Postel famous principle...

      I think that's because you misunderstand him.

      1. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

        Re: At least a software that will block Postel famous principle...

        Indeed. What this really means, is that the output of your code should be well define and meet the specification (conservative in what you do), but should handle unexpected input with an appropriate response (be liberal in what you accept).

        In practise, that means responding with an appropriate error, rather than assuming the input was correct and continuing anyway. In effect you shouldn't trust any data that you didn't create yourself (and because no software is ever 100% bug free*, you probably shouldn't trust your own data either until you've validated it).

        For example, if you have a web service with an API endpoint that is expecting some well formed JSON, and the consumer posts a gif of a dancing monkey to it instead, it should return a 400 response, and try to deserialise the monkey and carry on like it was all fine. Otherwise, such handling of unexpected input could result in an unpredictable error later on in your process, and potentially result in an exploitable vulnerability, such as a buffer overflow, or SQL injection attack.

        In other words, the Postel principle could be read as "expect other systems to pass all sorts of crap to you, and handle it appropriately." Appropriately, in almost all cases, being to reply with "unexpected input" or similar. After all, if the input is outside of what has been specified, then the behaviour that should be exhibited is also unspecified.

        *allegedly.

  12. Bartholomew Bronze badge
    Coat

    1170 blocked exit points, any blocked entry points ?

    Makes you wonder are there keywords that you can deliberately add to your source code to make copilot reject your code for inclusion in future scans.

    Like will adding words that look relatively benign, to me at least*, from the list like "immigration", "race", "male", "girl", "twinkie", "communist", "liberals", "immigrant", "men", "man", "females", "liberal", "males", "sexes", "races", "woman", "women", ... trigger copilot "too many bad words from the bad word list", rejecting that code for inclusion - scan the next file.

    *Maybe I just do not understand enough sexual and racial slurs, so some may have gone right over my head. Sorry if that is the case, I do not mean to offend anyone.

    1. MiguelC Silver badge

      Re: 1170 blocked exit points, any blocked entry points ?

      Funny that "Jebus" is on the list, but not the now more common "Jeebus" (or even the original "Jesus")

      Maybe they're not fans of The Simpsons?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      @Bartholomew - Re: 1170 blocked exit points, any blocked entry points ?

      So, no "race condition" ?

    3. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: 1170 blocked exit points, any blocked entry points ?

      "twinkie"

      I can fully understand that they'd ban the naming of something after a chemical weapon masquerading as food.

    4. stiine Silver badge

      Re: 1170 blocked exit points, any blocked entry points ?

      That's how I prevent google search from using autocomplete. start every search with "fuck" and when I get to the end, I hit the home key, shift-cntrl-right arrow, del, enter. This is less of a pain that trying to ignore google's inevitably terrible suggestions.

    5. cyberdemon Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Re: 1170 blocked exit points, any blocked entry points ?

      Yes, just make sure that your program has a 'man' page.

    6. ITS Retired

      Re: 1170 blocked exit points, any blocked entry points ?

      When anyone posts something, that means someone, somewhere, seeing the post, is offended.

      "The sky is blue." NO, IT'S NOT!!1!! It's grey where I am. How dare you to be so wrong!

  13. Spoonsinger
    Coat

    Are sea, pedestrian & red still OK?

    (Asking for a friend - who may or may not be a very naughty boy)

  14. Spanners Silver badge
    WTF?

    Illogical

    It finds "socialist" and "liberal" offensive but does not consider "conservative" to be.

    I have been offended by conservatives more than either of those, in fact more than all the words you listed.

    Or is it allowed so that we can carry on talking about them and how much some of us don't like them?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Illogical

      That’s ok… according to the new rules, everyone can just talk about the people they don’t like by calling them white people, since that is not banned

      1. hayzoos

        Re: Illogical

        This can offend white people. Therefore we shall from this day forward use the term sparsely pigmented people. We can then use sparsely pigmented for short.

        One thing I do not understand is why the word people itself is not banned. Statistically, I find most people offensive.

    2. Man inna barrel

      Re: Illogical

      > It finds "socialist" and "liberal" offensive but does not consider "conservative" to be.

      Shades of Orwell's 1984 there. There can't be any more socialists or liberals, if the words no longer exist to allow you to talk about such things.

  15. NerryTutkins

    outraged

    People "it's just a few words, don't people have better things to do than worry about this, its 'cancel culture'...."

    The Same People Two Sentences Later "i am going to vent spleen in the strongest terms, deliberately avoid such tools that implement these measures and demand laws outlawing this kind of censorship, while withdrawing all support from any projects that get on board with this...."

    Personally I don't get particularly offended by most of these terms, but I am even less bothered by the fact that people coding tools might decide they don't want to auto-suggest them.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Only English Words?

    Is it only English words which are blocked or a subset of 1,170 words that are English. So for example Israel in Dutch is Israël. Would that get through okay?

    1. marcellothearcane

      Re: Only English Words?

      Typing in Greek should be interesting, given some company has copywritten their alphabet.

    2. LDS Silver badge

      Re: Only English Words?

      It's really an issue when "male" is also an Italian word meaning "evil", but also "badly" - "Questo è scritto male" - "This is badly written".

      Does Copilot understand which language is analyzing, or is it another English Supremacist Software believing that no other language but English exists?

  17. Howard Sway Silver badge

    Wot, no GOTO?

    Haven't they heard how harmful this is considered to be?

    Here's the version of the sqrt function I use, which is even shorter than the linked one. A nice lunchtime brainteaser (til you give up and think happy thoughts about it being Friday again) :

    static union{int i; float f;} u;

    u.i = 0x5F375A86 - (*(int*)&n >> 1);

    return (int(3) - n * u.f * u.f) * n * u.f * 0.5f;

    1. bonkers

      Re: Wot, no GOTO?

      That looks really interesting...

      Is it possible to branch it off as a separate thread, or maybe a link to where it is discussed further?

      I'd love to know more of the principle by which it works.

      many thanks

      1. Howard Sway Silver badge

        Re: Wot, no GOTO?

        just search for 'quake sqrt function', and you'll find plenty of variations, and much better explanations than I could give.

      2. Andy Landy

        Re: Wot, no GOTO?

        this page has an excellent discussion about the quake fast inverse square root, including how to generalise it to other powers:

        http://h14s.p5r.org/2012/09/0x5f3759df.html

        1. bonkers

          Re: Wot, no GOTO?

          Brilliant, thank you :)

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Wot, no GOTO?

      Fiendish! (I gave up and found the magic number on wikipedia.) I guess not the thing for asteroid tracking programs or such though.

  18. DJV Silver badge

    Yes, but...

    (with a nod to Douglas Adams)

    ...is Belgium also on that list?

    Enquiring minds, etc...

    1. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Trollface

      Re: Yes, but...

      I bet they forgot "Semprini" too

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Won't someone think of the children

    Not the communist, palestinian, q rsqrt ones obviously. They need to be blocked.

  20. LionelB Bronze badge
    Joke

    They ought to vet punctuation too

    For example, a colon can completely change the meaning of a sentence:

    "She ate her friend's sandwich."

    "She ate her friend's colon."

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: They ought to vet punctuation too

      Also “placenta”, but that was a US West Coast thing

  21. Man inna barrel

    The professionally offended

    Jesus! (do not take the Lord's name in vain), who thought of this crap (offends prudes)? So "liberal" (offends Republicans) is a swear word now? Can't a man (offends feminists) say anything without offending some twerp (offends half-wits (offends idiots) ... STACK OVERFLOW))).

  22. Cuddles Silver badge

    Race?

    I guess the IOC won't be using copilot then.

    Or indeed anyone writing software that handles any kind of data involving gender, race, country, or a whole lot of other data that is quite commonly used in government and health settings. OK, I kind of understand the idea; they know some people are going to get horribly offended by some of the output of this tool, so they're getting ahead of the game by banning all words that could ever be considered offensive in any possible context. But just as banning "q sqrt" papers over a single instance without actually addressing the problem, banning a bunch of words devoid of any context doesn't address the issue that a code completion tool should be producing useful code rather than insulting people. If it's not capable of including "Israel" in a country list without also running the risk of calling the user a communist Israeli lesbian, the problem does not lie in allowing the word "Israel" to be used. The problem is that the tool is shit.

  23. gormful

    Gonna be hard write that pod-racing game when the word "race" is blacklisted. (Or whatever word you're supposed to use instead of "blacklisted".)

    1. katrinab Silver badge
      Happy

      "blocklisted"

  24. Il'Geller

    "The technical preview includes filters to block offensive words and avoid synthesizing suggestions in sensitive contexts,"

    To understand whether this is an insult, a joke or something else, a large number of implicitly used texts should be concidered, which are traditionally called “subtexts”. For example, Merriam Webster explains what subtexts are: the implicit or metaphorical meaning (as of a literary text).

    GitHub Copilot needs to make personal profiles, from which can get extra information, needed to infere the attached to words and phrases meanings.

  25. JohnGrantNineTiles

    Wise to use hash

    Back when computers were newer there was an exhibition (I think it was at the Science Museum) with an exhibit where you could type in a sentence and it would reply with something one of the earlier visitors had input. So it had to avoid parroting rude words, and had a file containing the forbidden words, in clear. Some enterprising person managed to get it to list the file.

  26. Paul Hovnanian Silver badge

    George Carlin

    ... is rolling in his grave. Trying to imaging how he'd rewrite his "Seven Dirty Words" skit to cover 1170 entries.

    1. stiine Silver badge

      Re: George Carlin

      It would make for a much, much longer show, and probably only be possible by using a forced oxygen breathing tube...

    2. imanidiot Silver badge

      Re: George Carlin

      I'd imagine he'd be able to base an entire show on the premise and go through all of them at least once during the set, instead of having only a single bit about it. I don't even think his seven dirty words bit is his strongest work. Probably his most well known work but he's made such good commentary on stuff that is still highly applicable.

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    This is a sad day for humanity

    and the future does not look good. At all.

    1. stiine Silver badge
      Devil

      Re: This is a sad day for humanity

      You're correct, but its looking like a great time to be a carnivore.

  28. Overflowing Stack

    Commie Cuban Pisswhackers

    I just wanted this title.

  29. This post has been deleted by its author

  30. msobkow Bronze badge

    Ah, man and woman are "offensive" now, are they?

    I always feared the day would come when the "I'm offended" crowd would win and finish destroying society. You can't even have this piece of junk create an address form that includes a person's sex with such restrictions in place.

    As per usual, they tossed out the ocean with the bathwater.

  31. xyz Silver badge

    pisswhacker

    Word of the year as far as I'm concerned. I'll be using it a lot.

  32. JDX Gold badge

    So I better hope I don't write code that might cause a "race condition"

    I'd far rather it told me it detected such a term, they are bound to get bug reports it simply isn't working when someone inadvertently uses a banned word.

  33. Ashto5

    Freedom of speech ?

    Why should a product contain a list of banned (by whom) words.

    Does a hammer have a safety system to test if you hitting a nail ?

    I am happy for it to highlight but it sounds like “cancel” culture to me

    If you don’t type what I want you to type then it stops working, that’s basically rubbish.

    Imagine the uproar if VS2020 auto corrected any AWS ref to Azure or refused to load a competitor package no more Nuget (actually hmm)

    You get the point

    1. RegisterDeez

      Re: Freedom of speech ?

      Controversial to post, but you're right. How have we gotten to the point where mention of the world "socialist" could send a person batty?

      People need to get a grip, stop trying to shelter theirselves

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