M-Theory: Why good story-telling skills enhance good code

A couple of years ago while drinking with co-workers, one of my European colleagues was telling a story that involved a French customer and a Slovakian development team and a partner in Shanghai, and…
A question popped into my head that I couldn’t believe hadn’t occurred to me years earlier. When several geographically distributed teams are working on a project, how do they comment the code?
The developers present explained that many people try to comment in English, but their proficiency varies greatly. They may not know how to get a specific point across other than in their native tongue. Some people comment in their native language if they don’t speak much English, or if all of their team members speak a particular language and weren’t working with any other groups for most of the project. When the various distributed parts of a big project come together, the resulting code commenting can be pretty Babel-esque.
No one would argue that any of these folks have exceptional writing skills. And yet they have worked for very big companies and delivered massive projects that affect a lot of people. Amazing, really.
So when I read an article like this one about writing as a “unicorn

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