Friday, October 24, 2008

while 1 < 1000

This is a true story, not a joke. This young student asked me to look at a piece of code he had written. He had an intentional endless loop that looked like this:
while (1 < 1000)


This sparked my curiosity and I asked him: why not do “while (1 < 2)”? I was expecting something like “I just like it that way” but no, to my utter surprise his answer was – “I just want to make sure”! I guess he was afraid that after a few loops 1 could grow and become bigger than 2! I contained my laugh and did not say anything but the puzzled look on my face probably gave him a cue that something was wrong with his reasoning.

It is funny and it does make one laugh (a couple of colleagues couldn’t stop laughing when I told them the story) but I also find it very sad for a college student to be at that level.

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