• dolo54 (unregistered)

    I vote for never doing this sort of contest again. Sorry... but I can't make it through a single one.

  • vt_mruhlin (cs)

    Despite the WTF Web Calc using my Google design, I have to go with The Buggy 4-Function Calculator for looking like something that might actually exist.

  • Beanalby (cs)

    I loved all the entries. Despite initial misgivings, I think this contest turned out wonderfully, and look forward to the next one. Great job all!

  • mgoss (unregistered)
    None of the above! TODO: Remove this option before making the vote page live.

    Was that intentional or not? ;)

  • Pap (cs)

    We get to vote, but you still get to decide? What is this, a Presidential election?

  • rbowes (cs)

    I notice that the currently winning entry is the coolest, not the wtfiest. I guess that's ok :)

  • Ian (unregistered)

    I absolutely loved it. Every finalist was an interesting idea and well written up. I'm really not a hard-core coder like you people (I'm a games coder) - maybe that's why I enjoyed it so much.

    Ian

  • SomeCoder (unregistered) in reply to dolo54
    dolo54:
    I vote for never doing this sort of contest again. Sorry... but I can't make it through a single one.

    Agree... this was a fun exercise but I much prefer real WTFs to contrived ones.

    Maybe do the contest but also have regular WTFs going at the same time.

  • micksam7 (unregistered)

    Darn it! Why is it so hard to choose?

    I know that if I pick, I will change my mind the very next day.

    Hm, well time to pull out my trusty coin.

  • RayMarron (cs)

    I had to go with the universal calculator. Not only is it ok to compare apples & oranges, you can multiply them!

  • Anonymous Coward (unregistered)

    Excellent, unique flavour like Mozart's Themes of Ah ! Vous dirai-je, Maman.

  • Pougan (cs)

    I must say that Terry's Calculator was my favorite. The FileSystemHashMapNotepad Calc and the OCR Calc were great too, but I've never seen such a perfect example of reuse :). And I believe its one of a very few that actually made me laugh.

  • BradC (cs)

    I voted for the "wooden table" calculator. Just so (intentionally) poorly executed. Nasty memory issues, runaway threads, and a tease-you-with-functionality-you-can't-use user interface.

  • anon (unregistered) in reply to micksam7
    micksam7:
    Darn it! Why is it so hard to choose?

    I know that if I pick, I will change my mind the very next day.

    Hm, well time to pull out my trusty coin.

    "the real WTF" as it were is that you have a 12 sided coin

  • Brad Peterson (unregistered)

    This was hard. Every single entry was the product of complete genius.

    OMG!OCRCAL had to get my vote. Simply because it combined two absolutely fascinating WTFs. The English style definition file alone would have won it for me, but having it combined with that user interface still leaves me amazed.

  • Niall (unregistered) in reply to dolo54
    dolo54:
    I vote for never doing this sort of contest again. Sorry... but I can't make it through a single one.

    QFT.

  • Strider (unregistered) in reply to mgoss
    mgoss:
    None of the above! TODO: Remove this option before making the vote page live.

    Was that intentional or not? ;)

    Depends on your definition of intentional...but yes I would say it was...and it has 4% of the vote to boot! Keep voting for None of the above! people!!!11one

  • Pasotaman (unregistered)

    I voted for #8 (Universal Calculator). It was the only one that made my think "OMG! WTF! What a stinking pile of cr*p". Sadly, I have seen this kind of software used in practice.

    My second choice would be #9 because of the wooden table (classic WTF) and the memory leaks. It doesn't get my vote because it's not plausible enough, tough.

    It seems that the OCR one (#6) is the one receiving the most support.... well, I think it is really impressive, and it even has a couple of WTF functions, but not that it represents the spirit of the contest.

    As a side comment, the real WTF is that a previous poster doesn't know how to make a uniform choice between 12 options with a 2-sided coin. You may hand your geek card at the door.

  • Tunfisch (unregistered)

    I don't want to vote! I want to see more and more finalists!

  • ender (cs)

    I voted for Universal Calculator, because sadly I've been exposed to such software (similarly overengineered base, with UI full of this-must-have-looked-like-a-great-idea-on-paper features that failed all usability tests) in real life.

  • savar (cs) in reply to vt_mruhlin
    vt_mruhlin:
    Despite the WTF Web Calc using my Google design, I have to go with The Buggy 4-Function Calculator for looking like something that might actually exist.

    Yeah its the clear winner in terms of being a hilarious sendup of things we see every day here.

    People just don't know how to vote.

    // Remove this comment before posting.

  • savar (cs) in reply to Pasotaman
    Pasotaman:
    As a side comment, the real WTF is that a previous poster doesn't know how to make a uniform choice between 12 options with a 2-sided coin. You may hand your geek card at the door.

    Please explain how this is done. Since 12 isn't a power of two, I think it would be quite hard.

  • lamer (unregistered) in reply to dolo54
    dolo54:
    I vote for never doing this sort of contest again. Sorry... but I can't make it through a single one.
    I agree with you. This site is getting worse and worse. I used to check it out several times a day ... now it's closer to one time every several days ...
  • Carnildo (cs) in reply to savar
    savar:
    Pasotaman:
    As a side comment, the real WTF is that a previous poster doesn't know how to make a uniform choice between 12 options with a 2-sided coin. You may hand your geek card at the door.

    Please explain how this is done. Since 12 isn't a power of two, I think it would be quite hard.

    There are two algorithms. One is simple, the other is guaranteed to terminate after a finite time.

  • Micirio (unregistered) in reply to savar
    savar:
    Pasotaman:
    As a side comment, the real WTF is that a previous poster doesn't know how to make a uniform choice between 12 options with a 2-sided coin. You may hand your geek card at the door.

    Please explain how this is done. Since 12 isn't a power of two, I think it would be quite hard.

    0001 - 1 0010 - 2 ... 1100 - 12 1101 - start again 1110 - start again 1111 - start again

    very hard...

  • MrPlow (unregistered)

    They're all brilliant. Having to pick the best one is like asking me what my favorite Beatles song is - the answer changes with my mood. I vote they all tie for first place, with a people's choice award to OMG!OCRCAL.

    Of course, then some would say WTF to the people's choice ...

  • Micirio (unregistered)

    0000 - start again

    ...forgot that, sorry

  • Micirio (unregistered)

    0000 - start again

    ...forgot that, sorry

  • T$ (unregistered)

    //TODO: Write a reply congratulating all those who entered on wonderful entries.

    //TODO: Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

  • araxon (cs)

    Well, I think that all of the finalist deserve to receive the high-resolution Jpeg price. I voted for the Universal thou, just because the spirit it takes to break that myth saying: "you can't mix apples and oranges". Brillant! :-)) Thank you for the contest, it was very funny.

  • Jim Miller (unregistered) in reply to savar

    Imagine a tournament with twelve players. In the first two rounds, each player is paired with another player. One player is designated 'heads', the other 'tails'. Flip the coin, the loser is eliminated from the game.

    After the first round you've eliminated 6 players. Pair up the remaining 6 for another round. Now you're down to 3 players. At this point you do a round-robin style tourney where each of the three players is paired up in turn with each of the other two players. For example, if the last three players are A, B, C, then the round-robin pairings would be:

    A vs B A vs C B vs C

    Now, it's possible that after one round of 'round-robin' pairings everyone will have one 'victory' and there's no winner. However, the odds of an infinite sequence of ‘no winner’ outcomes are very small and eventually (probably very quickly) there will be a winner.

    captcha: poindexter

  • Jim Miller (unregistered) in reply to Jim Miller

    Of course, you shouldn't really pair up players in the first two rounds as that is not very efficient. Since this is a game of chance, rather than skill, all you really need to do is create two groups (6 vs 6, then 3 vs 3) and the coin flip will chose which group goes to the next round. This way you only need two coin flips to get the the round-robin phase.

  • Welbog (cs)

    Being a finalist, I had a tough time trying not to vote for myself.

    So I voted for #2, because its approach had me giggling like a school girl for days. It was a tough choice, though. I like #6 and #8, too, just not as much.

    I'm still wondering how I got into the top 12 at all...

    Getting all of my coworkers and friends to vote for me, though, probably runs counter to my vote for someone else.

  • Ed (unregistered) in reply to Micirio
    Micirio:
    savar:
    Please explain how this is done. Since 12 isn't a power of two, I think it would be quite hard.

    0001 - 1 0010 - 2 ... 1100 - 12 1101 - start again 1110 - start again 1111 - start again

    very hard...

    This can be optimized quite a bit. If you assign the winners like this:

    0000 - 1 0001 - 2 0010 - 3 ... 1010 - 11 1011 - 12 1100 - start again 1101 - start again 1110 - start again 1111 - start again

    then any sequence that begins with 11 is a "Start over" command, and you can skip two coin flips on do overs.

  • Izzy (unregistered) in reply to Carnildo
    Carnildo:
    savar:
    Pasotaman:
    As a side comment, the real WTF is that a previous poster doesn't know how to make a uniform choice between 12 options with a 2-sided coin. You may hand your geek card at the door.

    Please explain how this is done. Since 12 isn't a power of two, I think it would be quite hard.

    There are two algorithms. One is simple, the other is guaranteed to terminate after a finite time.

    You have to think outside the box. Take your two-sided coin to the local D&D store and buy a 12-sided die. Roll it on a wooden table.

  • Danny (unregistered)
    Comment held for moderation.
  • snyd3282 (cs)

    And here I thought I would be cool and write a web service that took the calculations and sent them to another web service as individual bit operations, all wrapped in XML.

    I am glad that I didn't have enough spare time to do that though because these finalists were amazing! They had me rolling on the floor laughing while crying in anguish.

    Can we get hints on the contest goals for next year?

    I can see it now, the OMG!OCRCALC + Speech Recognition Calc implemented using a web service with one half extensibly written in LISP and the other half written in COBOL.NET running on virtual blobs of silicon that form transistors that was maintained by a team of clever developers over a period of 25 years!

  • TGV (cs)

    Congratulations to everyone on a wonderful contest. I can't vote: nearly all 12 candidates made me laugh the kind of laugh that says: OMG, someone might actually try this in reality, and I might be the guy that will have to maintain it. Shudder!

    So I won;t be able to vote. Although, VICE is very tempting: if you make a small error in the circuit, it will do most additions correctly, but fail on a few exceptional cases (such as the carry bit on odd additions above 1023). Imagine you get hired to find the error and you've never learned about digital implementations...

  • mh (unregistered)

    Has to be the Universal Calculator. It's exactly the kind of thing that would look great if written up as a consultant's proposal, would wow management with all the right bits in all the right places, seems to have been designed according to some standard in-house template that's totally unsuitable for the application's purpose, does the job it's supposed to do, but is really a steaming pile of dog poo that you just know will eventually have to be gotten rid of.

  • Thomas (unregistered) in reply to savar
    savar:
    Pasotaman:
    As a side comment, the real WTF is that a previous poster doesn't know how to make a uniform choice between 12 options with a 2-sided coin. You may hand your geek card at the door.

    Please explain how this is done. Since 12 isn't a power of two, I think it would be quite hard.

    Just use divide and conquer. ;-)

  • Thomas (unregistered) in reply to Thomas
    Thomas:
    savar:
    Pasotaman:
    As a side comment, the real WTF is that a previous poster doesn't know how to make a uniform choice between 12 options with a 2-sided coin. You may hand your geek card at the door.

    Please explain how this is done. Since 12 isn't a power of two, I think it would be quite hard.

    Just use divide and conquer. ;-)

    That would be 3 coin flips if you lucky and 4 if not. And you won`t need to start over.

  • dkf (unregistered) in reply to snyd3282
    snyd3282:
    I can see it now, the OMG!OCRCALC + Speech Recognition Calc implemented using a web service with one half extensibly written in LISP and the other half written in COBOL.NET running on virtual blobs of silicon that form transistors that was maintained by a team of clever developers over a period of 25 years!
    With the integration layer written in MUMPS...
  • FDF (unregistered)

    This contest produced more WTFs than were posted on this site since I started visiting sometime last year. I'm not sure if this is because of the lousy quality of the usual WTFs or because this contest is so great, but let's do it again sometime soon, before the usual unWTFy WTFs make this site too lame to visit ever again.

  • Jax (unregistered)

    I had to vote for Universal Calc, sooo very funny yet somehow almost plausible. It certainly hits the nail on the head in regards to useless architectural flexibility. The hints and systray were the icing on the cake.

  • Micirio (unregistered) in reply to Thomas
    Thomas:
    Thomas:
    savar:
    Pasotaman:
    As a side comment, the real WTF is that a previous poster doesn't know how to make a uniform choice between 12 options with a 2-sided coin. You may hand your geek card at the door.

    Please explain how this is done. Since 12 isn't a power of two, I think it would be quite hard.

    Just use divide and conquer. ;-)

    That would be 3 coin flips if you lucky and 4 if not. And you won`t need to start over.

    ...and each choice wouldn't be equiprobable

                      __  1     P = 1/16
                   __/
                  /  \__  2     P = 1/16
                _/
               / \    __  3     P = 1/16
              /   \__/
             /       \__  4     P = 1/16
            /
           /\         __  5     P = 1/16
          /  \     __/
         /    \   /  \__  6     P = 1/16
        /      \_/
       /         \    __  7     P = 1/16
      /           \__/
     /               \__  8     P = 1/16
    /
    \
     \             _____  9     P = 1/8
      \           /
       \        _/
        \      / \
         \    /   \_____ 10     P = 1/8
          \  /
           \/
            \
             \     _____ 11     P = 1/8
              \   /
               \_/
                 \
                  \_____ 12     P = 1/8
    
  • RichardNeill (cs)

    I never had time to write this, but my entry would have invoked clippy, and some hard-coded test cases. Eg:

    1. User enters "3+4="

    2)We use something like soundex on the string "three plus four" to discover which of the hard-coded test-cases is the closest match.

    3)Then, we use clippy to pop up "Did you mean: 7+8 ?"

    4)Finally, we present the correct answer to the calculation that the user "intended" to enter.

  • foxyshadis (cs)

    I was probably most disappointed by the lack of self-modifying code in the finalists. That would have been the instant winner for me, having once tried to debug an emulator that used it.

    The VICE concept can be extended quite far, to writing a C compiler in VICE targeting VICE API (then compiled with a C++ compiler), so that you don't have to go through the trouble of writing software directly in VICE. Those high-level abstractions are very important, you know.

  • Yariv (unregistered) in reply to Pasotaman
    Pasotaman:
    As a side comment, the real WTF is that a previous poster doesn't know how to make a uniform choice between 12 options with a 2-sided coin. You may hand your geek card at the door.

    It is impossible, unless you use the coin as currency and by a 6*k-dice (k will be 1 or 2, probably), or allow algorithms that are not guarenteed to stop after any given amount of time. The reason is that there is no such n that 12 divide 2^n, and so no algorithm that will use at most n coin-flips can split the 2^n possible results to 12 sets of equal size.

  • Jafet (unregistered)

    I would 'of joined this contest, but it was closed by the time I got here! (Yeah, lame excuse.) And the finalists seem to set a new high (low?) coding standard to boot. Anyway, ballot box extravaganza...

  • zzz (unregistered)

    Was there any calc with source code written in chinese alphabet? I don't know if it is possible with C++.

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