What is a CV anyway?

The term “CV” seems to be making the rounds in professional programming circles lately. If you had the same head-tilting “Huh?” reaction that I did, here’s the deal. CV is short for Curriculum Vitae, and is commonly used in academic circles and abroad. It’s essentially a highly-detailed resume, covering all your skills, background, awards, etc. It’s also consequently longer than your average resume, 2 pages at a minimum. There’s a great writeup about CV’s on About.com. So why the sudden pop in “CV” usage by programmers? As far as I can tell, it started over at Stack Overflow, specifically with their new Careers subsection. They’ve developed a system for posting all your developer creds, tied it into your existing Stack Overflow account, and labeled it a CV. The term works, given that the goal is to entice employers and employees to the site. What they serve up is obviously not a traditional CV, but rather an offshoot tailored for developers. Others have been jumping on the bandwagon ever since. So there you go, the next time you see the term CV, and you’re not in academia or looking for a job abroad, chances are you’re dealing with a programmer.