CS Jokes

Posted December 9, 1998 at 1:48 am No Comments

cslounge.jpg (14702 bytes)
The CS undergraduate lounge.

The CS undergraduate lounge is pretty nice.  Lots of whiteboards, comfortable couches, a vending machine that sells 20-ounce bottles of Cherry Coke for 50 cents… I used to feel really privileged to be able to go there.  Then I realized that the place was absolutely crawling with CS majors.  What a bummer.

At least when I go there I get to pick up the occasional bit of CS humor.  For example, the other day when I stopped in to buy a Dr. Pepper, I overheard this little gem:

Q: How do you get your ML program to work correctly?
A: Use the system library, and have it call your C program!

Is that a thigh-slapper or what?  Man, that ZML sure is a bucket of laughs.

Our TA for 15-213 is also quite a card.  Check out the joke he told us during a review session:

Q: Why do programmers win at hangman?
A: Because they play it in binary!

Knock them all you want, but I think that there’s something to be said for really bad CS jokes.  Obviously they’re very painful at the surface, but if you can fight your way through the initial feelings of anger and disgust, you can reach through the joke’s exterior, driving your mind deep beneath its surface to awe at its spectacularly pure, unadulterated geekiness.  That’s where the true humor lies.

In that vein, I’d say that the best CS joke I’ve ever heard has to have come from Pablo:

“Make like a binary acyclic connected graph and left and right equal NULL!”

Five bonus points if you get it.  This might help.

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