Girlpower folder

The famous girlpower folder…

I know that this is a funny side-gag, left over from the first days of vvvv, when the devs juste left the 90`s and stuff like “girlpower”, “boygroup” or “crack.exe” was funny.

But nowadays this may be interpreted in an offensive way by some people who are confronted with it.

Especially when using it as a folder for beginners examples, it can be perceived as discriminating, sexist or gender stereotype. Why? Because it is setting “girls” and “beginners” on the same level per default.
Which is a common bias in the male dominated tech industry.

And at last, if you pass this application to a client, it might shine a strange light on you in some cases, just as it was with the crack.exe

I know we always laughed about that joke and many of you love it. I anyway wanted to note it down after realizeing this already a couple of times when the term was in the air in beginners workshops and i had the slight feeling that some people got irritated.


PS: i hope that the vvvv community can do it better then the blizzard forums ;)

edit: I brought it more to the point, no need to argue with feminism here as I was told by someone who knows definately better then me…


I think that’s a discussion worth having.


totally agree with @tekcor.
it’s not only not userfriendly at all, but mentioning that name in workshops often enough rises frowns and questions why the heck it’s called that way. (just some weeks ago again)
furthermore it would upvalue all the effort that @robotanton has put into it cleaning it up.

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I’ve also found this awkward when teaching.

So two questions:
Is there any advantage to keeping it?
And if was to change it what to? (I’d probably suggest just ‘examples’)


is it ? can it not being perceived as a powerful example library, which is not only aiming at beginners ? i dive into it from time to time to look up things, even after using vvvv since 2004. therefore saying it is beginner by default is egocentric.


lets call it “gir power” like you did (by fault?)
gir is a strong animal helping us humans on a daily basis
means “Get It Right”

both is good enough for me.

Hey thanks for the replies.

Good to see that I am not the only one who had this feeling.

@u7angel sure, you can also talk only of an example folder, but what does it change about the issue? How does “egocentric” add to it?

@hrovac thanks for pointing this out I corrected the title…

i commented on the “girls beginner male dominated tech industry” argument.

concerning the naming, calling it “examples” would be more intuitive for most people

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Sorry to interrupt, but all the notions about frowns, potential sexist interpretations and awkwardness made me think.

Yes, when teaching I had that too (and it gets weirder with every year, i.e. the less familiar students are with the spice girls), but tbh I wouldn’t have felt totally relaxed talking about “women in tech” either, when confronted with it during a workshop. so maybe it is not the name, but more the touchy topic that is sexism in tech, especially when coming from a male mouth?

So something that would have readily be recognizable as a word pun 10 years ago is now opening a dialectic about gender - yes, that can feel awkward, if you are not prepared for it. If you are, you can actually make a decent point and highlight the empowering nature of the girlpower-patches.

I personally always liked the name “girlpower”, because it subtly reminded me (and anyone), that women are just as welcome to vvvv, maybe even more so. In that respect, I cannot see the parallels to the infamous crack.exe at all.

So yeah, the easy choice would be to take it out and rename it to a dull /examples
But that won’t fix any teachers’ awkwardness when suddenly confronted by the topic of women in tech.


not just welcome but a power to be reckoned with. so quite the opposite of what tekcor proposed. maybe i find this discussion somewhat weird since 4 out of 7 wirmachenbunt members are “girls”, all into tech and 3 are v4 artists.


I could also agree with @u7angel , girlpower folder (when looking at dx11 one), has tons of pretty advanced examples. So actually issue might be that you present it as a beginner folder instead of what it really is, an extensive resource for all levels (so issue is coming from you, sorry)


I also always had the feeling that the Girlpower folder was a collection/showcase of advanced vvvv tricks. For example: it was updated with every “opening-patch” that used to ship with every fresh release back in the days.
That changed a bit during the last years, when it was extended and structured, though.

So I had the opposite feeling: it is nice, that this special thing was tagged with the gender you wouldn’t suspect in this techy environment.

I personally still like all the little jokes and wordplays in vvvv. I also never had a strange situation with a client or similar regarding Girlpower/Boygroup/Crack.exe.
I even think that those little irritations can lead to discussions that wouldn’t have taken place when named examples/syncing/setup.


It’s certainly open to interpretation. idk for me at least the awkwardness is when someone asks why it’s called that. Maybe it’s cultural ignorance, but I don’t really know the answer.

  • what’s a joke worth, that needs explaining to be understood? besides it creates the notion insiderness
  • left aside whether the contents are to be considered to be beginner or not (which i think it is not), isn’t it enough that there obviously have been occurences where people don’t get the joke and don’t feel good about it? even if we here might not feel awkward about it, others might and do. should political correctness be about supporting minorities?
  • is it a good name in regards of usability or are there better ones? the ones who would profit the most by finding this folder probably have the hardest time identifying it. it resides with a cryptic name next to ‘lib’, ‘licences’ which both are not folders one usually starts browsing with joy either.

@woei : On a pure usability standpoint, yes this name is completely terrible (nowhere near as bad as crack.exe tho).

// politically not entirely correct comment incoming, I’ve got triggered, you got warned:
for the love of god, this got unnecessarily convoluted on self regulating in fear of easily offendable people, I mean who’s getting offended by the name “girlpower”? How do they go on with their life as a functional and cooperative member of our society without running into walls every time someone says something not gender neutral? This kind of hypersensitive self censorship just introduces harmful and unnecessary concerns where the end result usually won’t benefit anyone. I can agree on the confusing name, but please do not change it because of “girlpower can be an offensive or awkwardness inducing name” and it has absolutely nothing to do with any kind of minority whatsoever.
My point is yes “girlpower” is an insider joke, haha and might not be professional and some people completely dead inside might go like “hey why the world “girl” is in my perfectly sterile white cube environment where everything should be handed to me safe, complete, generic and immediately understandable” but it’s a cultural thing here, we used to put our demonstration patches in that folder here in vvvv town, changing it now might introduce more confusion to newcomers. Especially when every pack have to update with this change to be consistent.
Also I haven’t met anyone yet including seriously PC people, or technologically illiterate folks who got baffled by the girlpower folder name or content. Usually this is how that conversation goes:

  • “… and this is the folder where you can see some useful tips and tricks in vvvv”
  • “Oh cool thanks!”
    maybe if really surprised they’d say “Ha funny name”.

Don’t cater for people who can’t adopt or can’t find their way in a really simple environment and they don’t want to put effort changing that. They don’t worth the time. They just make everything worse. That’s why UX design now is about how to make monkeys interact with ridiculously complex systems, instead of helping people who has minimal structural thinking capabilities.


I got really itchy fingertips right now, but if we start to debate about whether women do or do not have the right to be offended or if they should just ‘get over it’ (I mean, really @microdee ?) this post will never end.

Are there any good reasons to keep the name ‘girlpower’ except nostalgia? Oh and of course filtering the people out who are ‘not worth the time’ as some would describe it?
There isn’t even a joke there. I checked.


I should have expected that this being extrapolated into gender inequality discussion. I never mentioned women specifically I said PEOPLE so I don’t care about any property of the hmm offendee. Everyone has the right to be offended but do you really want to work or interact with anyone (woman or man whatever) who’s getting upset about such nuanced and unimportant things? I’m not talking about really serious issues about gender inequality or discrimination, I’m absolutely against those. But I’m also against anything radicalized. Crying “misogynist bastards” over the phrase “girlpower”, which is literally assigning power to women (I don’t even get how one can interpret it otherwise), is a radical application of PC. that folder is not called “beginner-patches-for-girls”. Now that or any synonym of that would be seriously offensive and utterly stupid.

sorry if I was vague about it let me rephrase that to this very specific situation:
Don’t cater for people who can’t find the demonstration content just because it’s not specifically called examples but some different name, despite that is being mentioned in the 2nd or 3rd sentence of every beginners tutorial and the getting started documentation. I didn’t say filter them out, I said functional idiots shouldn’t be priority. Vanilla vvvv has such an underrated documentation, appreciate that. People crying about the vagueness of vvvv, have you ever worked with an industrial device? Or with any nvidia SDK stuff? Or anything else in the commercial tech field? they don’t have time holding your hands, in those fields if you can’t pull your compositing and engineering skills together nobody will care about you, you will be left behind! Does this mean they are discriminating or filtering out people based on non-relating properties? NO, it simply means they are a competitive environment and catering for people with skills in their field.

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maybe we get this thing going somewhere, if offended people were actually telling us about their aggrieviances with the word “girlpower”.
some of us clearly can’t see why the name itself would be offending (me including), so that might help our understanding.

so far we only heard, that other people did get offended, after someone pretended that only beginner patches are in that folder (which is just not true).


microdee, I understand where you’re getting at and actually no one shouted ‘misogynist bastards’, but sexism is not only about the Harvey Weinsteins of this world. It’s actually specifically about the small things, the everyday things, the subtle ones that have much more influence on our opinions and feelings. About the surprised the ‘Ooooh you’re a patcher?’ after an ‘So you work at this heavy-vvvv-using-studio, what do you do there?’.

About that name… I remember sitting in a NODE17 post-symposium discussion about ‘girlpower’ with Mika, who said that in Japan ‘girl power’ is something that you lose when you haven’t slept enough (bc working too much) and hence your make up doesn’t sit right. The ‘power’ of a ‘girl’ in Japan apparently is her perfectly painted face.
To be honest, I usually don’t have a strong opinion about gender issues because I’m kinda insensitive, but start this discussion with my sister and you will be sorry to have done so… just because we cannot conceive of how someone would be offended, doesn’t mean it’s impossible.

And what is wrong with making things as user friendly as possible?