• highphilosopher (unregistered)

    I think it's really a good idea to support Open Source initiatives. I also feel that the more I work in non-Open code environments, the more open they seem to become. We're not the dark room mages that we were ten years ago. The business world seems to be realizing that even if your source is closed, that collaboration isn't really a bad thing.

    Captcha: Tation - the state of being tat-ed. Currently receiving a tattoo.

  • St Mary's Apostate against that Mess (unregistered)

    I presume, for Windows Vista you'd get a whole planet adorned with a "6'000'000'000 SLOC bad code offset" banner.

    With free shipping of course.

  • Not funny (unregistered)

    I understand that this is a nice initiative and you are trying to diversify the website, but I'm missing all the fun of it... Last week we had two non-WTF stories, then yesterday a programming contest (apparently restricted to US programmers who are the only ones to understand those silly measurement units) and now this... What is next, MFD return???

    And tomorrow is Friday, which means Error'd which is the one I like the least...

    Please bring back more of those hilarious CodeSOD's and Tales from the Interview!!!

    Thanks!

  • Anonymous (unregistered)

    I support your core goal of helping open-source initiatives whilst continuing the fight against bad code - this is a worthy cause in its own way. But to be perfectly frank, I have far more important causes to be supporting right now. There is only so much money I give away per year and right now, helping to reduce bad code and supporting OSS is not high on my agenda. But good luck to you and well done for trying to make a difference.

  • ac (unregistered) in reply to Not funny

    If you want a WTF, follow "hideous mess" link in the intro to gpsd in the article. It's really quite impressive

  • Caffeine (unregistered)

    Jeepers not funny. Whilst I am sometimes perplexed at some of the stories, I'm a metric Australian. All that was required was a single conversion of the board length into inches (8' becomes 96" for example) all other figures in inches, or raspberries or goldfish for all the difference the units made.

    If that tiny concept stopped people then I think the project was either beyond them regardless, or more offsets would need to be purchased.

    Back on topic, good to see things moving and trying to make a difference (however small).

  • The Montoya (unregistered)

    Well, your heart was in the right place, but you've made a critical mistake: Eris S. Raymond.

    He is great at talking, but that's about it. Have a look at his code sometime - he's that kid everyone knows who's really excited about this stuff, but he just can't seem to get it right and ends up with a huge mess of code that kinda works. Sometimes.

  • Gieron (cs)

    Reading the article the "hideous mess" links to was really interesting. I used to work for a company that made GPS receivers. I'm sure my implementation of sending NMEA messages was just as unique as anyone elses.

  • Not funny (unregistered) in reply to ac
    ac:
    If you want a WTF, follow "hideous mess" link in the intro to gpsd in the article. It's really quite impressive

    Yeah, that was real funny! Maybe Alex could introduce some typos and republish it on this site... :-)

  • MC (unregistered)

    Maybe poor timing for this? I know that any money I am giving away right now is going to support the relief effort in Haiti.

  • pitchingchris (cs) in reply to Not funny
    Not funny:
    I'm missing all the fun of it... yesterday a programming contest (apparently restricted to US programmers who are the only ones to understand those silly measurement units)

    You're a wuss. As people have said in the comments, you can easily convert the same problem into metric. We are used to our system, and you are used to metric, it doesn't make either system better or worse, its just two different systems representing the same quanitity.

    Any opposing system would always look difficult (or wierd) to others because they are so accustomed to their own way. Doesn't make any system better or worse to me. Can't you just appreciate it for what it is (a simple exercise in algorithms) instead of everybody complaining about the stupid units?

  • DT (unregistered)

    Atleast the certificate was properly photographed on a wooden table

  • Anonymous (unregistered) in reply to pitchingchris
    pitchingchris:
    Not funny:
    I'm missing all the fun of it... <number systems>
    You're a wuss... <more number systems>
    Come on guys, if you really want to continue the argument about metric vs imperial then please use the comment section of the original article, not this one.
  • Minos (cs)
    Unlike the lower denominations, these are oversized and come matted and framed in the color of your choice.

    Really, there is no better choice of color than the BSOD Blue shown in the example.

  • HUH (unregistered)

    I think this is all a get rich quick scheme. Alex probably pockets 99% of the income and wipes his butt wit the other 1%

    CAPTCA: valetudo - Marduk will kick the crap out of Armored King simply because valetudo > wrestling.

  • amischiefr (cs) in reply to pitchingchris
    pitchingchris:
    Not funny:
    I'm missing all the fun of it... yesterday a programming contest (apparently restricted to US programmers who are the only ones to understand those silly measurement units)

    You're a wuss. As people have said in the comments, you can easily convert the same problem into metric. We are used to our system, and you are used to metric, it doesn't make either system better or worse, its just two different systems representing the same quanitity.

    That and it just goes to show how incompetent other people are. I, as an American, understand both our system and metric (it's not that hard, really). I even have some of the conversions memorized. Is it really that hard to take 5 minutes and look up 1 foot = 12 inches, that you have to say the assignment was 'only for Americans'? How pathetic.

  • Bim Job (unregistered)

    Gotta give ESR brownie points: he's hands-down one of the best at locating a credulous person with a bag of dimes and swapping dimes for dreams.

    This has got to be one of the stupidest protocol-based projects I've seen in a long time. I mean, what's it supposed to achieve? Is it really so unlikely that the massed plutocrats who sell GPS systems, plus the military-industrial complex, won't come up with actual official-like standards if left alone by people who say things like this (to quote ESR):

    The only real annoyances are that extracting decent documentation from vendors is difficult and getting them to ship us test hardware and eval kits without charging us an arm and a leg seems basically impossible. These clowns don’t seem to get that we’re adding market value to their hardware.

    That, Eric, is quite possibly because you are not adding anything of the sort.

    I look forward to the next epic fail for Bad Code Offsets. Incidentally, what has "bad code" got to do with "CSV protocols designed for a very limited purpose?"

  • frits (cs) in reply to HUH
    HUH:
    I think this is all a get rich quick scheme. Alex probably pockets 99% of the income and wipes his butt wit the other 1%

    CAPTCA: valetudo - Marduk will kick the crap out of Armored King simply because valetudo > wrestling.

    Hah! The only funny captcha post ever.

  • Zylon (cs)

    Must be a slow week for WTF submissions.

  • ctw (unregistered)

    The Good Code Grants is a fine project, current events aside.

    But taking a resource that's supposed to "ignite some bright idea gnawing at some developer somewhere" and awarding it to an in-development project headed by a guy so famous he's referred to by his initials... well, it doesn't seem right.

  • SR (unregistered) in reply to Zylon
    Zylon:
    Must be a slow week for WTF submissions.

    I'm currently coding at a rate of about 3 WTFs a day but am too ashamed to submit any of them.

  • Rob (unregistered)

    I don't mean to be a jerk or anything - but I don't see how $500 dollars is going to help anyone.

    A typical junior level developer is going to be pulling down 60k or so. And the people who are writing really awesome projects all their own, tend to be better than average. For a guy who is pulling down 80k a year....how much help is $500 dollars?

    Even at 60k, after taxes, you are looking at ~4k a month or $200 dollars a day.

    $500 dollars buys a programmer a long weekend.

    I think it's cool to support this sort of stuff, I'm just not sure how effective it will be.

  • Bazworth (unregistered) in reply to amischiefr
    amischiefr:
    That and it just goes to show how incompetent other people are.

    I don't think it's completely incompetence, more just laziness. I'm sure people here like coding, but do they really like interpreting spec sheets? I doubt it. You also haven't seemed to notice a lot of the carpentry terms are american terms as well.

    The problem could have been stated as "implement the bin packing problem for containers of this size and these values". Probably less exciting, but then it speaks clearly to everyone.

  • Rob (unregistered) in reply to MC
    MC:
    Maybe poor timing for this? I know that any money I am giving away right now is going to support the relief effort in Haiti.

    You should be very careful about how you go about supporting that effort....if you want the support to end up in Haiti.

    I donated to the American Red Cross - only to learn that the person running it takes home some $500k give or take, each year.

    That's a lot of money when your income is all charitable contributions....

  • jasmine2501 (cs)

    If you've got money to donate to worthy causes I suggest you send it to the Red Cross in Haiti and stop this bad code nonsense.

  • jasmine2501 (cs)

    Oh I guess somebody said that already.

    On the subject of the CEO of Red Cross being well-paid - it is a company, and if any charity tells you 100% of proceeds go to their efforts, they are lying and should be avoided. Red Cross is a huge company, and the CEO is compensated quite well, but not as well as the average CEO of a for-profit company that size. Non-profit companies have to compete for employees with for-profit companies, and one of the ways they do that is by offering a fair wage. They don't have stock options or bonuses and such - you get your salary and the knowledge that you furthered the mission, and that's it. If non-profits want to get good people, they have to pay a fair wage, otherwise they end up with incompetent boobs at the helm. Imagine for a minute, if the "AIG Bankruptcy" happened to the Red Cross... wouldn't that be... kinda bad?

  • Roy T. (unregistered)

    Why is the Bad Code Offset alliance logo a set containing nothing (the striked trough O in logic is the symbol for nothing and the { and } indicate a set)?

  • Anonymous (unregistered)

    Off topic (but the comments always are): Haiti is already saturated in international aid, more than they can even get into the country due to the damaged infrastructure. If you really want to help the fine folks of Haiti then you're better off waiting for six months then putting you money towards the long and painful rebuilding process. By that time it will have dropped out of the media and all this ad-hoc support will have dried up. That will be the time that they need your support more than ever.

    Right now there are more constructive things to be doing with your money that just chucking it into the pool of aid for Haiti.

  • Shanya Almafeta (unregistered)

    Wow, they're still shilling this? I thought it'd be done by now.

  • Jeff (unregistered)

    Bad code is what the codeoffsets.com (with aspx urls) looks like in internet explorer

  • DrJDX (cs) in reply to Rob
    Rob:
    I don't mean to be a jerk or anything - but I don't see how $500 dollars is going to help anyone.

    A typical junior level developer is going to be pulling down 60k or so. And the people who are writing really awesome projects all their own, tend to be better than average. For a guy who is pulling down 80k a year....how much help is $500 dollars?

    Even at 60k, after taxes, you are looking at ~4k a month or $200 dollars a day.

    $500 dollars buys a programmer a long weekend.

    I think it's cool to support this sort of stuff, I'm just not sure how effective it will be.

    To be sure, your estimate doesn't consider every factor.

    1. Region - Around where I live, starting developer pay is closer to $36-$40k, which doesn't leave one with a lot of free cash to spend

    2. HR Departments love to pay less to people who learned by doing and cutting teeth than those with college degree who don't know source control from proper indentation, and many times haven't even formed a consistent opinion on the OTBS (I know these examples are somewhat trivial (except source control), but they are hallmarks of something more valuable: real world experience). I've heard there are Java developers coming out of college who cannot fathom the functional or imperative paradigms (or, really, any paradigm except Java-OO). But enough rage from a developer who never went to college.

    3. Not every good developer lives in the U.S./U.K./Europe/etc. If you are a talented developer living in The Philippines or India, and they do exist (though in my experience they generally seem to get out of those countries, at least for a while), $500 is quite possibly a year's modest living expenses while you relax and work on nothing but your code. If there's a team of you, it still goes a long way.

    Yes, now that I've moved up in my career and all I care about is the dollar signs in my eyes $500 doesn't seem like a whole lot, but if I wanted to start an open-source project $500 would take a bit of the sting off getting an actual designer (at friend-rates, of course) to scratch out some UI components for me, or offering a small bounty to the OS community to help me with something I was struggling with, etc. That, and winning the nomination might attract additional talented OS developers to your movement.

    In summation: don't be so hasty, not everything is black and white, blah blah blah

    CAPTCHA: None, because I registered. Takes like 30 seconds and I don't ever have to care about it again. Sweet.

    EDIT: Addendum to #2 - If your primary language for whatever reason is ASM, you get a pass on OTBS. If it is Visual Basic, you do not.

  • DaveK (cs) in reply to The Montoya
    The Montoya:
    Well, your heart was in the right place, but you've made a critical mistake: Eris S. Raymond.

    He is great at talking, but that's about it. Have a look at his code sometime - he's that kid everyone knows who's really excited about this stuff, but he just can't seem to get it right and ends up with a huge mess of code that kinda works. Sometimes.

    Everybody Loves Eric S. Raymond: http://geekz.co.uk/lovesraymond/archive/show-them-the-code [image]
  • Guriga (unregistered)

    One of my cheeks happy for receiving my offsets yesterday. The other is sad because:

    1. I wanted to read about an anonymous guy developing some cool thing in the shed, not a big name. But this is the minor issue.

    2. I thought someone developing a more general-purpose project would win. A debugger? leak checker? collaboration tool? etc. I don't care a bit about GPS.

  • Evo (unregistered) in reply to Guriga
    Guriga:
    2. I thought someone developing a more general-purpose project would win. A debugger? leak checker? collaboration tool? etc. I don't care a bit about GPS.

    Pfew, tell me about it. I mean, there are way more programmers than people on the road, obviously. Duh.

  • darren71 (cs)

    2 days without a WTF - WTF?

  • gil (unregistered) in reply to darren71

    I was curious too about how they were planning to spend the $500.

  • dkf (cs) in reply to DrJDX
    DrJDX:
    HR Departments love to pay less to people who learned by doing and cutting teeth than those with college degree who don't know source control from proper indentation, and many times haven't even formed a consistent opinion on the OTBS (I know these examples are somewhat trivial (except source control), but they are hallmarks of something more valuable: real world experience). I've heard there are Java developers coming out of college who cannot fathom the functional or imperative paradigms (or, really, any paradigm except Java-OO). But enough rage from a developer who never went to college.
    Maybe you should invest a bit more in your education. Evening classes or something. Why? Because the best programmers of the lot are those with both a college education and real-world experience. One teaches you what's possible and the other what matters. Without real-world experience, a college graduate will tend to produce half-finished airy-fairy rubbish as a good number of the WTFs here have testified, but without exposure to what a (good) college education provides, a "real-word hacker" will make lots of poor decisions and dumb things (when the smart thing is slightly non-obvious). Maybe not quite at the level of a super peephole-optimized bubble-sort, but not far off. Sure, you might be able to cite an exception or two to this, but they're rare.

    Invest in yourself. You'll become better able to earn, and more able to amuse yourself with programming too.

  • asfda (unregistered)

    Eris S. Raymond, Seriously? His code is consistently atrocious. I like the idea of the bad code offsets, but am extremely glad I've taken no part in it as it is my sworn duty to keep my money as far away as possible from ESR.

  • RogerWilco (cs) in reply to ac
    ac:
    If you want a WTF, follow "hideous mess" link in the intro to gpsd in the article. It's really quite impressive
    Makes me remember my first job from 1999-2004, where our job was to communicate with PLCs and modems, especially with PLC's over landline or gprs modems.

    The job of working for a company that specializes in "telemetry and industrial control".

    This combined with basically re-implementing the Windows TAPI, as the MS solution is ehm... "unsufficient".

    I remember cycling though baud rates and parity bits to see if something the other side replied made sense at any of the combinations. Binary protocols, certainly done that.

    Oh and this baby: http://homepage.mac.com/bradster/iarchitect/new.htm (scroll down to Milltronics "Dolphon Plus"). That's the interface of the software to configure a certain sewage pump control unit, talking to those Siemens/Milltronics units was a major PITA to get right, even if they worked as the documentation said.

    The most fun are binary protocols without checksums and reverse engineering binary mobile phone (not Hayes compatible command sets), control and communication messages.

  • RogerWilco (cs) in reply to dkf
    dkf:
    DrJDX:
    HR Departments love to pay less to people who learned by doing and cutting teeth than those with college degree who don't know source control from proper indentation, and many times haven't even formed a consistent opinion on the OTBS (I know these examples are somewhat trivial (except source control), but they are hallmarks of something more valuable: real world experience). I've heard there are Java developers coming out of college who cannot fathom the functional or imperative paradigms (or, really, any paradigm except Java-OO). But enough rage from a developer who never went to college.
    Maybe you should invest a bit more in your education. Evening classes or something. Why? Because the best programmers of the lot are those with both a college education and real-world experience. One teaches you what's possible and the other what matters. Without real-world experience, a college graduate will tend to produce half-finished airy-fairy rubbish as a good number of the WTFs here have testified, but without exposure to what a (good) college education provides, a "real-word hacker" will make lots of poor decisions and dumb things (when the smart thing is slightly non-obvious). Maybe not quite at the level of a super peephole-optimized bubble-sort, but not far off. Sure, you might be able to cite an exception or two to this, but they're rare.

    Invest in yourself. You'll become better able to earn, and more able to amuse yourself with programming too.

    Totally agreed. What I've found is that self-taught programmers can be quite good, often better than those with a CS degree fresh out of college, but that those with little or without any education have huge blind spots. Things like algorithms, efficiency, types of problems, database design, or software design techniques. Things like n, n log n or n^2 algorithms, or what kinds of np problems exist, or database orthogonality.

  • tang5danqing (cs) in reply to highphilosopher

    12234

  • oggie (unregistered) in reply to tang5danqing
    tang5danqing:
    12234
    0118 999 881 999 119 7253
  • pitchingchris (cs) in reply to Evo
    Evo:
    Guriga:
    2. I thought someone developing a more general-purpose project would win. A debugger? leak checker? collaboration tool? etc. I don't care a bit about GPS.

    Pfew, tell me about it. I mean, there are way more programmers than people on the road, obviously. Duh.

    While you may be right, a lot of times a GPS will take you down roads you have no business being on. It might take you down a road that seems shorter, but sometimes it don't care if its a dirt or gravel road or a main highway. It seems like a shorter path, even if it takes you down a bunch of winding backroads. Sometimes its best to confirm yourself anyway.

  • Alex Papadimoulis (cs) in reply to Rob
    Rob:
    I don't mean to be a jerk or anything - but I don't see how $500 dollars is going to help anyone.

    A typical junior level developer is going to be pulling down 60k or so. And the people who are writing really awesome projects all their own, tend to be better than average. For a guy who is pulling down 80k a year....how much help is $500 dollars?

    Our Grants do not go towards paying developers for their time. Free/OpenSource is about passion, not making a living. The latter is what day jobs are for.

    We believe that donating to open source should be about offsetting hard costs. It's hard enough to spend your nights and weekends, but to have to dip into your own pocket for hardware, servers, hosting, etc. makes it that much harder.

    Sure, once you're a senior developer making $100K, a few hundred a month isn't much... but, usually when you're at that level, time is precious (kids, house, work, etc). Younger developers starting off don't have a the extra $$ to throw around, but they have the time.

  • Bim Job (unregistered) in reply to Alex Papadimoulis
    Comment held for moderation.
  • Bubba (unregistered)

    Wow....WTF is with all the ESR-hating around here? Love him or loathe him, the Open Source world is in a drastically better place thanks to his efforts. He deserves many pats on the back.

    Good choice, Alex. GPSD is quality code, a great product, and is increasingly useful as GPS components are becoming more popular in mobile devices...being geoloc-aware is fast becoming a baseline standard.

  • BobC (unregistered) in reply to Alex Papadimoulis

    In the case of GPSD, $500 will buy a BUNCH of GPS devices!

  • Doug (unregistered) in reply to MC
    Maybe poor timing for this? I know that any money I am giving away right now is going to support the relief effort in Haiti.

    Wouldn't your money always go to helping starving people all over the world any time in the last 200 years? What makes Haiti different, other than the small number of people who are suffering there, compared to the poor African nations?

  • Schobi (unregistered) in reply to Roy T.
    Roy T.:
    Why is the Bad Code Offset alliance logo a set containing nothing (the striked trough O in logic is the symbol for nothing and the { and } indicate a set)?

    My question exactly: why "the set containing the empty set" and not "the empty set"? Honestly, please answer us. This is what keeps me up at nights.

  • Mouse (unregistered)

    I have/had no idea who/what ESR is or was before reading this, but having looked through here, and read that 'projects' homepage, I have come to the conclusion that he is a cock.

    That is all.

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