9 The weirdest programming languages

13 Sep 2018  /  Tech world  / 

There is no doubt most developers have learned a lot about programming languages so that can boast excellent knowledge of Assembler, Pascal, Java, Python, Ruby etc. They all have loyal fans and fierce opponents; different languages can be sharpened for a specific task or be more universal, but for the most part, they are used by intelligent developers to solve professional problems.

But when programmers get bored with serious programming languages, they begin to develop new not ordinary but esoteric ones. Such languages are being created to explore the limits of the possibilities of developing programming languages, as a work of software art, or, as is often the case, as a joke. At the same time, many of the esoteric languages are potentially no worse than the classical ones, that is, theoretically they can be used in any projects.

Esoteric languages often parody “serious”, and the texts of programs on them are understandable only to the initiated. While developers of really used languages try to make the syntax as clear as possible, and the process of writing code to be convenient, the creators of esoteric languages usually set themselves opposite tasks. Let’s learn more about weird prog lang.

Whitespace

Almost all such creations have eloquent titles, and Whitespace is not an exception. In 2002, Edwin Brady and Chris Morris set out to create a language based on only unprintable characters. On April 1, 2003, on the day of publication, many considered it an amusing April Fool’s joke, but it was not so. As a result, the language gained popularity but did not reach international recognition.

Chef

There is one wonderful person living in the world, David Morgan-Mar. One day he decided to invent an amusing programming language Chef. It’s an attempt to teach programming people who are in love with cooking.  This language looks like a cooking recipe, with the following principles:

  • the output generated by code should be not only technically useful but also easy to prepare and delicious;
  • recipes should have different budgets;
  • the ones should be metric.

Basically, it should be working as code, at the same time to be delicious and with a possibility to be eaten. Try out the “Hello World” Cake with Chocolate sauce.

Shakespeare

In Shakespeare, variables named by the names of the heroes interact with each other (acts of input-output) in acts and scenes, ask pressing questions and periodically leave the stage (the rules of the play allow simultaneous work with only two Shakespearean personalities).

Brainfuck

In fact, this is a very famous and popular programming language, created primarily for entertainment, rather than serious tasks (yes, before that there were extremely useful languages). It was created in 1993 by Urban Muller and consists of only 8 characters: “>”, “<“, “+”, “-“, “.”, “,”, “[“, “]”.

Chicken / Ook

The language consists of one word – chicken. So, looking at the code page you will see nothing except the word “chicken” written on the whole page. The lang was created by Swedish programmer – Torbjörn Söderstedt, inspired after hearing Doug Zongker’s parody of scientific speeches (which nobody understands). 

Ook! Is similar to the Chicken, it also consists of one world with several variations of Ook, “Ook!”, “Ook.” and “Ook?” the aim was to create a programming language “writable and readable by orangutans” and we are not kidding you. Writing “Hello, World!” in Ook looks similar to the Chicken version.

INTERCAL

It is one of the oldest esoteric languages (created in 1972 by Don Woods and James Lion). Unlike the languages listed above, Intercal has quite understandable algorithms, but with little “surprises”. The irony is the use of absolutely useless words and signs (this was the sin of many of the program codes of that time). So, for example, in one of the modifications for performing any operation, you should affectionately ask the computer to insert “please”. In other cases, you must call the program to forget (“forget”) or ignore the written (“ignore”).

Malbolge

Meet language that you do not want to laugh at. Its name is a reference to the “Divine Comedy” of Dante. According to this work, “Malbolge” is the eighth circle of hell, where deceivers lived. Preceding from this short reference it is not difficult to understand what to write on “Malbolge” even a fairly simple code – an impossible task. A funny fact in this story: most of the programs in this dialect were written by other programs through a trivial search.

English

English tries to imitate the natural sound of a language. Pay attention that its syntax is very free and gives the programmer a fantastic freedom of expression. All in all, no language function can be defined by the programmer – it only can use built-in English.

Here is just a small part of the most insane and ridiculous languages on which you can try to write your fun code for the sake or for brain training. The esoteric languages that are included in this collection are one of the ways to propose and approve new ideas. Sometimes the following ideas influence the whole programming industry, but more often because of their impracticality, they remain just fun.

Summing up

The list of programming languages described above was rather created for fun. Doubtedly any of those languages is used for writing serious codes and programs. Most of them are not ready to be used for programming, but still, it is funny to know about and use it for fun.