There is a hat named IDENTIFICATION DIVISION which can be earned by earning a silver badge. The hat name is in all caps.

Is the naming in all caps purposefully, or is this a bug?


3 Answers 3


It's intentional - it's a reference to COBOL, which Admiral Grace Hopper worked on. It's how the code would look.

Whoever came up with this needs additional stamps on their geek card.

  • 4
    I'll take those stamps :) Also note that IDENTIFICATION DIVISION is where the program -- and now the hat -- gets its name.
    – balpha StaffMod
    Commented Dec 13, 2017 at 14:30
  • 1
    dots.... that makes a what? 4 layered joke? or 5? ;p Commented Dec 13, 2017 at 14:31
  • 3
    This is the kind of great answer that also makes the question great. How did you leap to this answer?
    – Bathsheba
    Commented Dec 13, 2017 at 14:32
  • 1
    The opposite way everyone did. I recognised who the hat was(Grace Hopper was awesome), and knew she was a legend - looked up what languages she worked on, and googled the language and the string :) Commented Dec 13, 2017 at 14:34

No, this is on purpose. IDENTIFICATION DIVISION is a statement in COBOL, see this Hello World program:

PROGRAM-ID. hello-world.
    DISPLAY "Hello, world!"

Because it's the first line in a COBOL program, it's aptly placed first in the Winter Bash hats overview.


Now we all luxuriate in encodings like UTF-16 and the frankly obese UTF-32, it's occasionally nice to travel back a generation or two and use text that can be encoded in DEC SIXBIT and perhaps even earlier.

This hat showcases such encodings.

Some programmers especially those using COBOL and even early FORTRAN dine out on this sort of thing.

Reference https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Six-bit_character_code

  • Oh for those heady days of RADIX-50! That said, say instead "luxuriating in Unicode" and you’d be closer to the mark. None of us can be said to "luxuriate" in UTF-16; it’s a terrible UTF encoding, suffering from all the faults of UTF-8 while simultaneously lack any of the benefits.
    – tchrist
    Commented Dec 15, 2017 at 1:18

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