Monday, May 01, 2006
For the life of me I don't know…
…why I write SQL in ALL CAPS.
But I do.
I write VB in standard upper/lower. I write C++ (on the, like, two occasions I've ever had to do so) in plain-Jane upper/lower. And Java. HTML. Any other coding language I have ever had cause to mangle use, I write as if I were writing a note to my friend. "Dear Computer, please loop through the following items and do this, that or the other until Condition A is no longer true, thanks, love always, Me."
But not SQL. For some reason known only to the deep, dark recesses of my mind, I always write SQL in CAPS.
And then, when I flip over to, say, write an email, I'm in ALL CAPS. And I grouse and mutter to myself and hit the cap lock key and get on with my life.
It isn't like it doesn't work if you say "select * from TABLE" (<== this is about the only place where it matters – field and table names can sometimes-but-not-always be fussy about caps), it won't work. It works just fine. But I tried to do some coding in lowercase on purpose, just to prove to myself that it worked just fine…and it made me feel uneasy. As if I expected someone to swoop down and shout, "NO! That's WRONG! Five points off!!"
It's like the old story where the newly married woman cuts the ends off the ham, every single time she makes one. Her new husband asks her why she does this. She says she doesn't know – her mother always did, and that's why she does.
Asking the mother, she replies that she also has no idea why she did this. It was because grandma always did. Naturally, they turn to grandma expecting something wonderful, some sage bit of elder advice, some 'magic cooking technique' kind of reason for the cutting off of the ham-ends…
And she says, "Well, because otherwise it wouldn't fit in the roasting pan, dear!"
I have no idea why I do SQL in all caps. I suspect it will ultimately be because somebody, somewhere in the dim recesses of my career, taught it to me that way. And I dutifully pass it along, to anyone who ever has the misfortune of being taught by me.
And someday, somewhere down the line, someone will question my logic. And they'll call me seeking my sage elder knowledge (snort!), and I'll say, "Well…because I thought it looked neater, dear!"