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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    22

    Most disturbing column names

    Hey folks,

    Whilst working on a database today I came across a column named "temporary_fix". Being that this is in production, I'm thinking it wasn't nearly temporary enough.

    It occurs to me that there must be some great stories out there of disturbing names for columns, tables and other objects.

    Give us your best.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Along the shores of Lake Michigan
    Posts
    242
    I don't know about truly disturbing names but some with obscure meanings like "CD Text1" that is used for multiple purposes. Sometimes an email address, sometimes a user name, sometimes a client user ID - all built into the application but having no absolute meaning to the DBA. Trying to dig through code to determine what the flippin' field really means and then find "it depends" on the client. Wait'll I find the developer(s) that created that nonsense!!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    22
    That's nothin'

    I've got this;

    company_id
    policy_id
    start_date
    transaction_no
    version_no
    step
    file_name
    override_rate
    comment
    rate_amount
    rating_type
    excess_amount
    endorsements_1
    endorsements_2
    endorsements_3
    endorsements_4
    endorsements_5
    endorsements_6
    entry_date
    user_id
    xs_imposed
    endorsement_imposed_1
    endorsement_imposed_2
    endorsement_imposed_3
    endorsement_imposed_4
    endorsement_imposed_5
    endorsement_imposed_6
    removed_endorsements_1
    removed_endorsements_2
    removed_endorsements_3
    removed_endorsements_4
    removed_endorsements_5
    removed_endorsements_6
    below_gross
    cover_type
    policy_section
    rate_percent
    rate_table
    sequence_no
    gr_rate_index
    location_sequence_no
    pm_quote_id
    pm_quote_transaction_id
    targeted_or_xref_data_group
    target_or_xref_data_group_seq_no
    temp_numeric_store_1
    temp_numeric_store_2
    temp_numeric_store_3
    temp_numeric_store_4
    temp_numeric_store_5
    temp_numeric_store_6
    level_1_premium_value
    level_summary_type
    per_item_value
    points
    score
    comp_key_for_grcompd
    premium_description
    excess_code
    additional_data_1
    additional_data_2
    additional_data_3
    additional_data_4
    additional_data_5
    additional_data_6
    additional_data_7
    additional_data_8
    additional_data_9
    additional_data_10
    additional_data_11
    additional_data_12
    additional_data_13
    additional_data_14
    additional_data_15
    additional_data_16
    additional_data_17
    additional_data_18
    additional_data_19
    additional_data_20
    xref_entity
    referral_reason_1
    referral_reason_2
    referral_reason_3
    referral_reason_4
    referral_reason_5
    referral_reason_6

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    out on a limb
    Posts
    13,692
    Quote Originally Posted by scorpioTiger
    That's nothin'

    I've got this;

    company_id
    policy_id
    start_date
    transaction_no
    version_no
    step
    file_name
    override_rate
    comment
    rate_amount
    rating_type
    excess_amount
    endorsements_1
    endorsements_2
    endorsements_3
    endorsements_4
    endorsements_5
    endorsements_6
    entry_date
    user_id
    xs_imposed
    endorsement_imposed_1
    endorsement_imposed_2
    endorsement_imposed_3
    endorsement_imposed_4
    endorsement_imposed_5
    endorsement_imposed_6
    removed_endorsements_1
    removed_endorsements_2
    removed_endorsements_3
    removed_endorsements_4
    removed_endorsements_5
    removed_endorsements_6
    below_gross
    cover_type
    policy_section
    rate_percent
    rate_table
    sequence_no
    gr_rate_index
    location_sequence_no
    pm_quote_id
    pm_quote_transaction_id
    targeted_or_xref_data_group
    target_or_xref_data_group_seq_no
    temp_numeric_store_1
    temp_numeric_store_2
    temp_numeric_store_3
    temp_numeric_store_4
    temp_numeric_store_5
    temp_numeric_store_6
    level_1_premium_value
    level_summary_type
    per_item_value
    points
    score
    comp_key_for_grcompd
    premium_description
    excess_code
    additional_data_1
    additional_data_2
    additional_data_3
    additional_data_4
    additional_data_5
    additional_data_6
    additional_data_7
    additional_data_8
    additional_data_9
    additional_data_10
    additional_data_11
    additional_data_12
    additional_data_13
    additional_data_14
    additional_data_15
    additional_data_16
    additional_data_17
    additional_data_18
    additional_data_19
    additional_data_20
    xref_entity
    referral_reason_1
    referral_reason_2
    referral_reason_3
    referral_reason_4
    referral_reason_5
    referral_reason_6

    nice....
    nice to see that developers have got to grips with normalisation before being let loose on live systems
    I'd rather be riding on the Tiger 800 or the Norton

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    12,592
    Most disturbing? I have the one that beats them all.

    Was working on a MAS500 DB. Had a devil of a time just connecting to it.
    When I got in, I found the usual crappy naming convention; all the column names were truncated to four characters (think you can see this coming?). More so, instead of truncating the actual words, they truncated the phonetic spelling of the word.

    I'll give you one guess as to the name of the Country field in the address table. Hint: it was not COUN........
    If it's not practically useful, then it's practically useless.

    blindman
    www.chess.com: "sqlblindman"
    www.LobsterShot.blogspot.com

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    One Flump in One Place
    Posts
    14,912
    i_will_murder_you_in_your_sleep

    It was boolean.
    Testimonial:
    pootle flump
    ur codings are working excelent.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    12,592
    Quote Originally Posted by pootle flump
    i_will_murder_you_in_your_sleep

    It was boolean.
    Is it the use of underscores you object to?
    If it's not practically useful, then it's practically useless.

    blindman
    www.chess.com: "sqlblindman"
    www.LobsterShot.blogspot.com

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    One Flump in One Place
    Posts
    14,912
    No - it was the NULL value. You just want to know where you are with that sort of thing. Was it genuinely unknown? Had the operator simply forgotten to fill it in? Wouldn't happen with a TRDBMS you know.
    Testimonial:
    pootle flump
    ur codings are working excelent.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    11,434
    From a 3rd party expenses application
    Code:
    extra_column_1
    extra_column_2
    extra_column_3
    ...
    extra_column_20
    Each of which is char(100) - brilliant!

    Best of all - we store information in extra_column_11 and no other - I have no idea why either.

    There is also a table on a legacy application server called "scream". I'd find this funny but it's one I've implemented
    George
    Home | Blog

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Along the shores of Lake Michigan
    Posts
    242
    Amongst others on the table:

    CL FText1
    CL FText2
    CL FText3
    CL FText4
    CL FText5
    CL FText6
    CL FDate1
    CL FDate2
    CL FDate3
    CL FNum1
    CL FNum2
    CL FNum3
    CL FNum4
    CL FNum5
    CL FNum6
    CL FCur1
    CL FCur2
    CL FCur3
    CL FCur4
    CL FCur6
    upsize_ts

    And, no, I did not implement this. That would make ME scream......Still not sure what ever became of CL FCur5???

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Arizona, USA
    Posts
    1,848
    Many, MANY moons ago, I worked with a distributed process control system whose supervisory node ran on a honeywell level 6 minicomputer. Patchs could be implemented using a proprietary language called 'keytran' (sort of a red-headed stepchild of fortran and basic.)

    To hook the program into the running software, you used a command line app named Hook_Program, called with the mnemonic HP, and to unhook a patch, you used, logically enough, the Unhook_Program, called with a mnemonic of UP. In the printed documentation for Unhook_Program, the program name you unhooked was YOURS.

    That's right... the manual said "UP YOURS" !
    Lou
    使大吃一惊
    "Lisa, in this house, we obey the laws of thermodynamics!" - Homer Simpson
    "I have my standards. They may be low, but I have them!" - Bette Middler
    "It's a book about a Spanish guy named Manual. You should read it." - Dilbert


  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    125
    I worked on an HR system that had a column named STD. When I asked they said it stood for short term disability.

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