The idea to name hurricanes was based on the desire to make the storms easier to report to the public and easier to compare in later years. The idea may have first come from an author who named a fictional storm in a novel in the early 1940s. Researcher/Meteorologist Peter Chaston reports that the U.S. Weather Bureau began naming storms in 1950, using the already-existing military code words for letters, beginning with Able, Baker and Charley. Within a few years, people's names were substituted. Hurricanes were given female names at first. In 1979, male names were added and now, we alternate.