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chaoticset (2105)

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JAPH. (That's right -- I'm not Really Inexperienced any more.)

I'm not just here, I'm here [], and here [] too, I ramble randomly in my philosophical blog [] and my other blog []. Soon I'll come in a convenient six-pack.

Journal of chaoticset (2105)

Monday March 03, 2003
10:45 AM

Bastard On Skates

[ #10863 ]
I'm fairly excited at this point -- I think I might just be able to scrape together enough funds and time to attend YAPC this year.

Plus, I'm going to be looking at SelfGOL, which intrigued me the second I heard about it. Utter bizarreness:

In this talk I dissect the SelfGOL program: an obfuscated, self-aware, viral quine that can self-replicate, rewrite other Perl programs to allow them to self-replicate, detect un-rewritable Perl programs, execute itself or other Perl programs as cellular automata of arbitrary size (to play Conway's "Game of Life"), and/or animate any short text as a cycling marquee banner.

SelfGOL accomplishes these feats in under 1000 bytes of standard Perl, without importing any modules, and without using a single if, unless, while, until, for, foreach, goto, next, last, redo, map, or grep.

To do all that in under 1K of code, it relies on some extreme programming techniques, and on many of the obscure backwaters of the Perl syntax.

If that doesn't sound interesting,'re probably not like me, then, I guess. :\

Anyway, I didn't see the code posted at Damian's site so I Googled it up, and SelfGOL code is indeed available on the web. Analysis necessary...

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    • relies on some extreme programming techniques...

    I was wondering what this 'extreme programming' was all about and now I know!

  • Single best presentation I have ever attended. The code isn't half as interesting as Damian's sideshow-barker style of presenting it.

    BTW, be careful when dissecting it, there is signficant whitespace and lack of whitespace. (This is a feature)

  • I think I must be one of the only perl programmers who has absolutely no interest in obfuscated perl. I find *far* more interest in the beauty of a clean program which maybe explores some of the interesting edges of Perl's OO space, yet while still being well written and easy to understand. Something like Pixie for example.