winner of the first IOPCC

winner of the first IOPCC

I am a big fan of the “The International Obfuscated C Code Contest” (IOCCC). Their winners page is littered with creative and (in it’s own way) elegant code. Unfortunately I know just enough C to appreciate the code there, I could never write anything like this myself.

So I was on fire when I heard that there was a python-version of the contest: The IOPCC. I immediately started to work on a submission.

It was a lot of fun on multiple levels. I had wanted to do something with abstract syntax trees for a long time, so I started fooling around with them until I had something sufficiently obscure. Then I started to condense it, make it as obscure as I could and formed it into an ascii art image.

When I was satisfied I submitted the code and waited.

What I submitted

Normally code I write would go into a repo, but this is a piece of art, not a piece of work. It won’t be iterated on anymore, there are no pipelines, no issues. So I will just link the files here in this blogpost:

The output of the code looks like this:

The output prints out it’s own code, then evaluates the code quality in terms of the zen of python. It gives itself a pretty bad score.

The announcement

I waited and waited.

A few months later the winners are announced. And I am one of them! Horray!

Here is what the Judges said about my code:

Most Introspective.

Very well put together, top-notch obfuscation. Tongue-in-cheek, comments on itself (very meta, which we like).

This definitely goes into my resume. If people see this award winning code they probably won’t hire me, but I don’t care. I am very proud.