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25 September 2017

Waka Waka Bang Splat

So there's a poem in code, apparently going back to 1990, made almost entirely without words.

< > ! * ' ' #
^ " ` $ $ -
! * = @ $ _
% * < > ~ # 4
& [ ] . . /
| { , , SYSTEM HALTED

For it to make sense, you need to read it out loud:

Waka waka bang splat tick tick hash,
Caret quote back-tick dollar dollar dash,
Bang splat equal at dollar under-score,
Percent splat waka waka tilde number four,
Ampersand bracket bracket dot dot slash,
Vertical-bar curly-bracket comma comma CRASH!

Many thanks to Cathy Snider at University of Colorado Boulder for giving me some of the history behind this poem. It seems to originate from 1990, according to the earliest reference found (dated December 1995). According to calvin.edu, the authors are Fred Bremmer and Steve Kroese.

Steve's Bourne / Bash shell scripting tips
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