Friday, May 3, 2013

What's the weirdest named instrument you've heard of?

Pretty sure you need to run that sample
again, fella. Credit: Wikipedia
Back in the day, I used to get my data from a LC/MS named Chief Wiggum. I think he was one of a number of different Simpson-named instruments that we had.

I'm pretty sure I've heard of HPLCs named after Disney characters as well. [Why is it that NMRs never seem to be named?] Sports teams, literary characters, etc. are probably all good candidates.

Readers, what's the best naming system you've heard of?

Have a great weekend! 

34 comments:

  1. Our NMRs are named after characters from the Chronicles of Narnia. The 500 is called "Aslan" and the server itself is called Narnia.

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  2. Our 500's are called "Indy" and "Daytona"

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  3. My husband's postdoc lab named their computers after the Marx brothers

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  4. Not quite an instrument but we named our rotovap "Trumpy" after watching the Pod People episode of Mystery Science Theater 3000.

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  5. The 600MHz in our department is called 'Godzilla'.

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  6. The less-than-modern NMR in my undergrad was named Charlene.

    Frustrated orgo students would frequently storm out of the lab, complaining that "Charlene is acting up again!"

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  7. [PI] Tonight, you pukes will sleep with your instruments. You will give your instrument a girl's name because this is the only ***** you people are going to get. Your days of finger-banging ol' Mary-Jane Rottencrotch through her pretty pink panties are over! You're married to this piece. This instrument of steel and circuits. And you will be faithful. Port, hut!

    [Advisees] This is my NMR. There are many others like it, but this one is mine. My NMR is my best friend. It is my life. I must master it as I must master my life. Without me, my NMR is useless. Without my NMR, I am useless. I must shim my NMR true. I must characterize faster than my colleague, who is trying to scoop me. I must scoop him before he scoops me. I will. Before God I swear this creed: my NMR and myself are defenders of my thesis, we are the masters of our department, we are the saviors of my life. So be it, until there are no postdocs, but tenure. Amen.

    [Disgruntled postdoc] 5-0-0 Megahertz Nuclear Magnetic Resonance

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    1. This is the crudest, funniest comment I've read all week.

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  8. I named our lyophilizer "Zoltron." just cause it sounded cool.

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  9. Our NMRs in my old Grad departments were named after Greek Gods because they were so powerful. SO far we have Artemis, Zeus, and Cronus.

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  10. In a previous job, our spectrophotometers were named after Sesame Street characters: Ernie, Bert...

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  11. Are you kidding with the "NMRs not named" comment? Everywhere I've been (that has multiple NMRs) has named them. Mostly they are boring names (famous retired professors, generic scientific names, etc) but I've also seen this particular type of magnet fittingly called R2-D2 with the other NMRs in the department named Star Wars names that I don't remember.

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    1. No, I'm not. (Of course, I haven't been very many places.) It's usually "the 300" or "the 600", right?

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    2. or "the Varian" or "the Bruker."

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    3. I've seen "Rocky", "Bullwinkle", and "Boris" NMRs.

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    4. Descriptive names (MHz, brand) are boring and logical. Even if you have just one (I'm going to discuss naming the NMR at the next dept meeting) giving it a name gives it personality and creates confusion when someone not in-the-know overhears an instrument discussion.

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  12. A (paraphrased) conversation I had around the middle of my grad school years:
    Me: Can I borrow your UV-Vis, the lamp is out in mine?
    Student: Oh you mean Samson?
    Me: I mean the UV-Vis
    Student: It's name is Samson
    Me: You shouldn't name minor instruments
    Student: Why?
    Me: Its like naming the research mice in the animal labs, you are just going to get attached and when it dies it'll break your heart

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  13. Back in graduate school our glove boxes had plush dolls from “The Simpsons” straddling the anti-chamber’s pressure gauge so we had Homer, Marge and Bart. I don’t recall if any of our department’s NMR spectrometers had names but at least two of the UNIX work stations that ran them did, Karla and Smiley from “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy”. Karla was the offline workstation while Smiley ran the 500MHz NMR. At work I found that our QC department names their GCs. Each one has a different color for its name (Red, Blue, etc.) except Sparky it received that name after it was rebuilt due to a fire

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  14. All our FLIPRs are named after dolphins; Irrawaddy, Boto, Spinner, Bottlenose..

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  15. NMRs in my department are mostly named after single malts- Laphroaig, Lagavulin, Glenlivet, Glengrant, Cragganmore...

    I've worked in a lab where the furnaces (for solid-state synthesis) had interesting names: George (OK that's boring), Charlemagne, Jezebel, Chewie and Jabba the Hutt. Not sure which theme (or themes) they were going for there

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  16. One of my friends works at a company that names their instruments after Star Trek characters, but that must be pretty common.

    There is an analytical/environmental group at UCSD that builds and uses mass spectrometers and names all the instruments. However, the most interesting one was for the massive original one that they built. It was called the Beast. One of the group alumni from back then told me that when someone injured themselves fixing it the PI would tell them that they just got the mark of the beast.

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  17. Our 500 is called the SECSY 500. A grad student filed a complaint (not me), but its an experiment acronym thus it rightly remained.

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  18. I must also be from AlphaGamma's department - NMRs named after whiskey. But there is also Gromit, the little NMR machine the undergrads use.

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  19. In my old postdoc lab we named all the (first edition) iMacs after gods of Chaos, Death, Destruction and War. the only one I remember was called Kali.

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  20. MIT NMR spectrometers are named after Saturday morning cartoon characters - Rocky, Bullwinkle, Casper, and a few others whose names escape me.

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  21. we named our shaker (solid phase peptide synthesis) the "rump-shaker"

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  22. I never have never named my equipment and they have never been named like that that in any lab I've worked ... I always thought Abby on NCIS naming her MS but silly.

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  23. I named the HPLC I use by the buildings they are in.... This is not an interesting nomenclature - but it helps pin down more information about timing of the experiment. (One of the HPLCs has been throwing more temper tantrums since it was moved when its original home was shuttered.)

    Little pessimistic to name HPLCs by location - but seems fitting for this era of STEM contraction.

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  24. our gloveboxes back in my old research group were called "batcave" and "fortress of solitude"

    made the many, many hours we spent in there less depressing =)

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  25. Our glovebox in grad school was nicknamed for a girl in the next lab, as they both spent many hours with a rotating cast of sweaty, semi-awkward men working away in them. Also, you wouldn't want to do anything with either of them without thick shoulder-length rubber gloves.

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  26. in my grad days, our boss was obsessed with futurama. our peptide sythesis robot was called "bender".

    he drank tons of solvent and was just a damn surly #&%@ that is was so appopriate

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  27. The HPLCs in my department (process chemistry) are all named after the beer that fits the main user. We have Budweiser, Fat Tire, 90 Shilling, Pabst, etc..

    In the old days we had an NMR that was housed in another building. Due to its remote location, it was named Kamchatka.

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  28. I created a computer cluster on my filing cabinet that I named after my previous labmate, larry.

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