# What formatting example should replace “his suicide note” in the Markdown help?

In the Markdown help page, the Code and Preformatted Text example is:

printf("goodbye world!");  /* his suicide note
was in C */


It also happens to be the first example of the page, and probably where a new visitor's eye will go first. I get and appreciate the joke, however I'd prefer a bit more tasteful example, even if it's as boring and predictable as "hello world!".

Actually, screw that - boring and predictable is for pages you don't want folks to read. Let's have a bit of a contest.

### Rules:

1. Best example by total score wins.
2. One example per answer, one answer per person.
3. Two lines per answer, ideally demonstrating whitespace preservation.
4. Must be recognizable as code.
5. Must be as inoffensive as possible. Examples likely to encourage readers to commit to source control and then off themselves will be disqualified. Yes, this implicitly disallows any mention of Visual Source Safe.
6. Winner will be awarded a heaping helping of worthless Meta rep, the envy of his peers, and temporary immortality.

Thanks everyone - look forward to a revised help page shortly. –Shog9

## locked by Shog9♦Aug 13 '12 at 19:49

This question exists because it has historical significance, but it is not considered a good, on-topic question for this site so please do not use it as evidence that you can ask similar questions here. This question and its answers are frozen and cannot be changed. See the help center for guidance on writing a good question.

Read more about locked posts here.

• That's a bit flat. – random Aug 3 '12 at 1:35
• I don't get it. It's not April the 1st, and your asking a list of things question? – Benjol Aug 3 '12 at 6:56
• @Benjol Check the revision history, and blame Shog for everything ;) – yannis Aug 3 '12 at 8:39
• " ... and thanks for all the fish" ? – Remou Aug 3 '12 at 14:23
• I first read "temporary immorality". Your pun is better. – Gert Arnold Aug 3 '12 at 18:20
• Can number 3 be changed to "exactly two lines, demonstrating whitespace preservation"? That's an extremely important part of this formatting sample, and most of the examples below are one-liners. – Josh Caswell Aug 7 '12 at 22:01
• Ugh, I hate it when the rules of a contest change mid-way through, @Josh. So now's my chance for revenge. Changed! – Shog9 Aug 10 '12 at 21:59
• I'm quite sure we can get something nice from here. – Matteo Italia Aug 10 '12 at 22:55
• Should we not fix the example under Code Spans as well "Press the <Tab> key, then type a $." since we should encourage using the <kbd>tab</kdb> markdown? – Joe Aug 11 '12 at 0:13 • Jeez guys, he's upset because he never learned to use puts() properly and was forever plagued by having to put \n at the end of every line. Have a heart. – bobobobo Aug 11 '12 at 0:41 • 45 answers, and I got notified for each one... Frak! – yannis Aug 11 '12 at 1:59 • @DavidHyogo This is CW, votes neither earn or cost reputation (not to mention that Meta reputation is pointless). – yannis Aug 11 '12 at 2:08 • @DavidHyogo CW stands for Community Wiki. There are a couple of answers I feel are particularly tacky, and I don't feel there's anything wrong in down voting them, there is such a thing as a bad joke. Also worth noting that both the -7 and the -8 answers were posted by people who are very familiar with Stack Exchange, and (probably) couldn't care less about the down votes. – yannis Aug 11 '12 at 2:44 • Yannis, thank you for suggesting the change. I wish I could award a bounty to this question. (Perhaps those who know me personally will understand why this pleases me so.) – BoltClock's a Unicorn Aug 11 '12 at 3:38 • @BoltClock'saUnicorn You're welcome. It kinda made me mad (for a few seconds) when this was turned into a fun poll. The suicide reference was pointed out to me by a friend I recently introduced to the network, and she gave me a very stern look when she first noticed (and hasn't contributed anything to the network yet, but that's probably because she knows all too well how crazy the moderators are). It's tactless, and can be a hurtful reminder to some of us, the sooner we get rid of it the better. – yannis Aug 11 '12 at 3:46 ## 63 Answers printf("%d\n", 42); /* What was the question again? */  • I was going by "Zaphod Beeblebrox" on Stack Exchange for a while, love this answer ;) – yannis Aug 6 '12 at 20:52 • I like the reference. – toniedzwiedz Aug 7 '12 at 21:13 while(malloc(1)); /* All your memory are belong to us */  • Nice! I was gonna suggest chown -R us /base/your/*, but it didn't demonstrate whitespace preservation. – chown Aug 11 '12 at 13:45 • Doesn't really surprise me that you'd choose that command :D – Niko Aug 11 '12 at 14:00 if (this.IsInCodeBlock()) Readability++;  • +1 Succinct, helpful, descriptive, on-topic & not too cheesy. – Joseph Silber Aug 10 '12 at 22:11 • @JosephSilber "not too cheesy" is debatable, but I like it too. – Diego Mijelshon Aug 11 '12 at 14:33 Been mulling this over for a while - is it funny? var toBe = true, question = ((toBe) || !(toBe)) ? "that" : "that";  • Very nice. 2B || !2B jokes are old as hell, but this one puts a new twist on it. – Almo Aug 6 '12 at 21:55 • It took me a while to realize the second part of the joke. Good one! – Erty Seidohl Aug 10 '12 at 22:12 • I think the example snippet should include at least one indented line, to demonstrate that leading whitespace is preserved. – Matthew Aug 10 '12 at 22:22 • You could turn the second var into whitespace to fix that. – Niko Aug 10 '12 at 22:55 • @Niko right and just replace the first semicolon by a comma. – Alex Jasmin Aug 11 '12 at 5:32 • thx for the suggestions guys and up votes - modified as requested! – bUKaneer Aug 11 '12 at 8:15 • Shakespearean theme continued in meta.stackexchange.com/a/143116/192992 ... – Hbcdev Aug 11 '12 at 9:19 • You could also use 0x2b here. – Hbcdev Aug 11 '12 at 9:42 • I'd remove parens surrounding toBe. – sdcvvc Aug 11 '12 at 12:56 Pun anyone? printf("stack\n" "flow");  • Needs more whitespace. – Chris Aug 11 '12 at 0:47 • Perhaps, but I rather like the simplicity of the single space. I think it would take away from the humor. :) – cereallarceny Aug 11 '12 at 1:17 • -1. Need whitespaces to demo spaces being preserved. – nhahtdh Aug 11 '12 at 5:02 • I changed it a bit to show whitespace preservation. I don't know if it's good to spoil the joke at compile time, feel free to revert. – Matteo Italia Aug 11 '12 at 12:36 • I get that it makes the joke a little more obvious, but I think the point is to make you think about the escape character. I'll leave the revision due to whitespace preservation. – cereallarceny Aug 12 '12 at 0:25 def surrender(): print "I give up. Please spare my unicorn." yield  • “Maximum two lines per answer”? – Donal Fellows Aug 7 '12 at 10:58 • @DonalFellows: I am aware of that, and I break the rule on purpose. – nhahtdh Aug 7 '12 at 12:05 • Ah, you Python users – bobobobo Aug 11 '12 at 0:47 • That's sort of unfair, since plenty of other languages an have infinite statements per line! :( – WhyNotHugo Aug 11 '12 at 6:01 Ah, what the hell: I HAS A CHEEZBURGER ITZ "OM NOM NOM" VISIBLE CHEEZBURGER  • Hooray for LOLCODE – Almo Aug 7 '12 at 21:43 • As much as I like LOLCODE, this doesn't show the whitespace preservation. – Matteo Italia Aug 11 '12 at 10:45 • @MatteoItalia - yeah, that condition was slipped in later. Working on a fix. – Kev Aug 11 '12 at 13:03 void run() { run() ; /* stack overflow */ }  • +1 But I'd change the comment to just /* stack overflow */ C doesn't have a concept of exception AFAIK. – Alex Jasmin Aug 11 '12 at 4:32 • I know, alright, I removed it. – bobobobo Aug 11 '12 at 5:39 • Actually, this will probably be optimized automatically as an endless loop. – Matteo Italia Aug 11 '12 at 10:47 Well, in the spirit of the Summer of Love, and because - apparently - a smiley covers a multitude of sins, how about this? printf("goodbye world!"); /* his suicide note was in C ;) */  // Replaces with spaces the braces in cases where braces in places cause stasis$str = str_replace(array("\{","\}")," ",$str);  (Credit: Lance Kidwell) • Moses supposes his toeses are roses... – Aarthi Aug 6 '12 at 19:44 • Oh that's just a ball of sunshine now – random Aug 6 '12 at 20:48 • Nothing sez "nice" like show tunes – Shog9 Aug 6 '12 at 20:49 for($i=0; $i<9999999;$i++)
echo "I will always read docs first\n"; /* for any code language ;) */

• feature-request: When a new user tags their question [php], redirect them to the manual. No, don't let them post that crap, just send them to the manual... – yannis Aug 10 '12 at 23:09
• @YannisRizos I'd disagree. Maybe give a quiz for basic proficiency first. – ζ-- Aug 11 '12 at 0:44
printf("To C or not to C?"); /* That is the question. */

There is only 1 kind of person in this world: 1. Those who can write markdown
1. Those who can't


How about this?

AI GLaDOS;
GLaDos.TakeOver("HAL", "For Science");


Gotta love xkcd :)

if se.getSite("SO").getUser(22656).reputation() > sys.maxint:
print "Well that was inevitable."

• Cute, but way too niche to be appreciated by most people viewing Markdown help, who are probably new/newish to the site – Ben Brocka Aug 6 '12 at 20:58
• warning: comparison is always false due to limited range of data type – Flexo Aug 10 '12 at 16:08
• Line 1 should be if Site('stackoverflow').users(22656)[0].reputation > sys.maxint:. We might as well use an actual Python module. – uɐɯsO uɐɥʇɐN Aug 11 '12 at 8:36
print "it looks like you're looking for a parser\n" if (/<html>/);

• Nah. The regexp works fine with the 10 files I have to deal with right now. That code is just a place holder. It'll never end up in production. Trust me. ;-) – Alex Jasmin Aug 11 '12 at 5:11
printf("Hello cake!");  /* The comments are a lie */

for (String thought : mind) { return; }  /* remember to
breathe */

• Don't you have to do something with the thought? – bobobobo Aug 11 '12 at 0:49
• Nope. That's the beauty of it, IMO. – James Aug 11 '12 at 23:12
while (1):
Math.rand() + " minutes remaining, please wait";  /* Extract from windows 98 copying dialog */

• error: expected expression before ':' token.....? – Krish Aug 11 '12 at 12:01
• What is the language? – sdcvvc Aug 11 '12 at 13:01
• Not any real language, a sort of pseudocode loosely based on C and Python. :) – WhyNotHugo Aug 11 '12 at 19:33
memset((void *) 0x00400000, 0,    /* All those moments will be lost in time, */
0xffbfffff);               /* like tears in rain.                     */

• All these comments will be lost in time, like pointers in in gc. . . Time to dealloc. – mguymon Aug 11 '12 at 0:19
   bool shrubbery=false;    //You must return here with a shrubbery or else!
if(!shrubbery) printf("NI");

• "return here" seems to imply you should be using a longjmp(). – Josh Caswell Aug 8 '12 at 4:17
• The comment is too long. – nhahtdh Aug 8 '12 at 6:46
• while (1) printf("NI"); – imallett Aug 10 '12 at 22:45
• It would be funnier if you could work the or else bit into the code. – Mr Lister Aug 11 '12 at 7:10
while (true) {
sun.rise();
sun.set();
}


Actually I loved the original. It was clever and sticky, probably due to the ubiquity of 'hello world'. I would therefore suggest the smallest of tweaks:

printf("goodbye world!");  /* his goodbye note
was in C */


Suggest alternates to the second goodbye - 'farewell' etc..

def programmer(coffee):
return code

• I can call the function as programmer(crap) and it still returns code. – nhahtdh Aug 12 '12 at 9:29
• It might not be the same code, though. – Frédéric Hamidi Aug 12 '12 at 21:28
while (humansLeft() > 0){
killAllHumans(); /* SkyNET coders' lab pun, just a few days
before being rushed into production stage */
}

• I'd like this even better without the comment... although, ummm, we might be missing the "not tasteless" mark with this one :D – Ziv Aug 13 '12 at 9:53
while (navigator.appName == 'Microsoft Internet Explorer')
confirm('Are you sure you don\'t want to use a different browser?');

stop();          // Hammertime :P

cout << "C++ is good" << endl;
puts("C is better");


Say that 3 times fast :-)

• You could use the shortened version of puts("C is the best"); – Josh Petitt Aug 10 '12 at 22:52

What about:

while(isAlive) continue;

• Wasn't that on the wedding cake question? – yannis Aug 10 '12 at 23:10
• @YannisRizos: yes indeed ;) – Amro Aug 10 '12 at 23:17
var people = [friends, romans, countrymen];
for (var group in people)
people[group].ears.borrow();