I’m about 1/3 of the way through JPod and it is hilarious! It also really hits home. I imagine much of it won’t be very funny to people who are not software developers or IT people, but if you are, this book is more Dilbert than Dilbert.

Part of the premise is the frustrations that the characters face when they are told that–having nearly completed the development cycle for a skateboarding video game–they must add a turtle character modeled after the host of Survivor because the marketing team lead’s son loves turtles.

While I have never been asked to add a turtle to a video game, I think the “turtle” is an apt analogy for the addition of a completely useless feature that will complicate the development process and add no value whatsoever to the software. This had happened to me on some occassions and from now on, when it happens, I’m going to refer to these requests as “turtles.”

Thanks, Douglas Coupland!

About Jamie Todd Rubin

Jamie Todd Rubin writes fiction and nonfiction for a variety of publications including Analog, Clarkesworld, The Daily Beast, 99U, Daily Science Fiction, Lightspeed, InterGalactic Medicine Show, and several anthologies. He was featured in Lifehacker’s How I Work series. He has been blogging since 2005. By day, he manages software projects and occasionally writes code. He lives in Arlington, Virginia with his wife and three children. Find him on Twitter at @jamietr.