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Code Dread

Programmers at play

Meet nine of the weirdest programming languages you've never heard of

Even hardcore programmers, it would seem, are not exempt from a little fun and games.

Paint Me a Picture

Meet Piet, named for abstract artist Piet Mondrian. Rather than rely on words or numbers, the language uses 20 colors to execute operations – the results look something like a Mondrian painting. Aside from the ubiquitous “Hello World”, Piet can also test whether a number is prime, print the first 100 Fibonacci numbers, or output the letters of the alphabet.

Hasta La Vista, World

Arnold Schwarzenegger movies might not be known for their technical, or artistic, graces, but apparently they can produce some basic computational output if arranged just so. That’s right – ArnoldC uses nothing but dialogue from the buff Bavarian’s films to create a unique, though slightly stilted, programming language.

All the World’s a Code

For anyone new to the weird world of computer programming, trying to read code might as well be an alien language. Shakespeare attempts to add a little grace to the experience – the language is designed to result in source code that resembles one of the Bard’s plays.

Me Programmer

Want to get guttural? Ook! is a programming language consisting of nothing but the inputs Ook, Ook!, and Ook? Needless to say, that primitive input is going to result in equally primitive output.


If you weren’t already sick of lolspeak, wait until you try to program in it! LOLCODE was developed in 2007 and features code like “HAI” (to introduce the program) and “KTHXBYE” (to terminate it). Remarkably, it’s Turing complete.

The Blank Slate

The Whitespace programming language gets metaphysical – instead of using text, the language uses only spaces, tabs, and linefeeds to assign meanings. The code ends up looking like some heavily redacted top-secret document; the results are slightly more impressive.

Oh, There’s More

How about Cheese++, based entirely on cheese? Perfect for brogrammers, TURKEY BOMB combines programming with a drinking game. And then there’s Brainf**k, a remarkably popular language that does pretty much what the name promises.

If you want to check out more of computer science’s esoteric programming languages, check out the wiki here.

Now go forth (and get weird).


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