So, Jeff, what are you using to store reputation, anyway?

closed as too localized by Tim Post Dec 26 '12 at 10:40

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    If they use a long, I think we're safe for a few billion years at least. – Paul Tomblin Jul 2 '09 at 14:14
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    If they use Python's datatypes, there is no limit for his rep. – Masi Jul 2 '09 at 14:16
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    @Masi: Storage is always going to be a limit. – Jon Skeet Jul 2 '09 at 14:40
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    640K should be enough for anyone.... – user95071 Jul 2 '09 at 15:19
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    Am I really the only one just about tired of questions about Jon Skeet? I mean I respect the guy immensely but give it a break already... – Paolo Bergantino Jul 2 '09 at 19:50
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    @Paolo, in this case, the question is about when Rep exceeds the datatype, like the 'twitpocalypse' and because JonSkeet is the leader for the foreseeable future, he cannot be excluded from THIS question. – devinb Jul 2 '09 at 21:31
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    His profile views too would need the same data type. Right now its going neck and neck. And for the titan he is, his rep is slightly ahead of profile visits.. – nawfal Mar 29 '13 at 9:18

14 Answers 14


Why do you think the rep cap was invented? Defensive coding in the guise of a social mechanism ;)


A new data type is automatically spawned called JonSkeetInt that can hold an infinite value.

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    "Automatically" is also another term for "Jon Skeet did it himself". Obviously he'll change the datatype to one that can hold his new rep. – MiffTheFox Jul 5 '09 at 2:15
  • Miff, "Multiple references to the same class (Jon Skeet). Maximum recursion exceeded." – Lakshman Prasad Jan 10 '10 at 16:19

2^32 = 4294967296 (unsigned int)

4294967296 / 200 = 21474836.48 (factor in daily rep cap)

21474836.48 / 365 = 58835.1684... (factor in days in a year)

So it would take Jon Skeet (and his descendants presumably) 58835 years to overflow the datatype.


It has been correctly pointed out that Jon Skeet is not bound by a 200 rep cap. He in fact has an average of 279.850... points per day.

74 720 (JonSkeetRep) / 9 (MonthsActive) * (365 / 12) (avgDaysPerMonth)

2^32 = 4294967296 (unsigned int)

4294967296 / 272.949 (JonSkeetDailyRepAvg) = 15735420.5217... (NumberOfDaysToOverflow)

15735420.5217 (NumberOfDaysToOverflow) / 365.25 (AvgDaysInYear) = 43081.2334... (NumberOfYearsToOverflow)

So Jon Skeet would still have to live another 43000 years.


Second edit to reflect the fact that there are 365 days in a year and not 356

  • 14
    Set's his calendar. – Ólafur Waage Jul 2 '09 at 14:26
  • devinb, you'll have to re-figure your numbers including the cap-immune accepted-answers. You can still win 15 points an answer even after you've hit the cap, and Skeet has acknowledged that this takes place with him from time to time :) – Sampson Jul 2 '09 at 14:30
  • That's assuming he never has any answers accepted. The better calculation would work out the percentage of questions he has accepted and the rate at which questions are asked, too. I don't have the data set in front of me, sadly. – Hilarious Comedy Pesto Jul 2 '09 at 14:30
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    For what it's worth, over Tuesday/Wednesday I averaged 502 points per day. Those we pretty remarkable days, admittedly... and I don't think it makes that much difference to the feasibility :) – Jon Skeet Jul 2 '09 at 14:39
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    Who are we to say that Jon Skeet won't live for 43000 years? – Hilarious Comedy Pesto Jul 2 '09 at 14:42
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    How do you know he hasn't already lived for 43000 years? He could be a Highlander. ;) – gnostradamus Jul 2 '09 at 14:50
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    THERE CAN BE ONLY ONE....JON SKEET! – Thomas Owens Jul 2 '09 at 18:56
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    @gnovice: He's English, not Scottish, so he can't be the Highlander. He's obviously the Doctor. – Eric Jul 2 '09 at 19:06
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    365 days in a Solar year, 355 in a lunar year. 356 in neither. – geoffc Jul 2 '09 at 19:26
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    @geoffc Oh, my dear god. How did no one notice my heonius dysxelia? – devinb Jul 2 '09 at 19:33
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    @geoffc: technically, there are 365.2425 days in a year. :) – Kip Jul 2 '09 at 21:05
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    @Kip: I'm not adjusting my calculations again. – devinb Jul 2 '09 at 21:30
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    @Kip: Meh! Close enough for horseshoes! Darn Gregorians! – geoffc Jul 3 '09 at 1:19
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    @Geoffc: Don't blame Pope Gregory, blame God! If He'd just made the earth spin 0.0664% slower, or if he'd made the earth just a little closer to the sun, we wouldn't need leap days... – Kip Jul 4 '09 at 0:55
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    @Kip - I think you mean "blame Jon Skeet." – Super Long Names are Hilarious Sep 13 '09 at 3:13

Fact: Jon Skeet's reputation cannot be stored in any datatype. It exists only in not-yet-invented quantum computing devices.

Fact: The reputation number you see beside Jon Skeet's avatar is merely the projection of his reputation into the 4-dimensional spacetime that humans understand. His reputation actually occupies most of a 256-deminsional hyperspace.

Fact: Only Jon Skeet is capable of understanding how the previous two facts do not contradict each other.

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    This was the best answer – jamylak Jun 7 '13 at 1:07

The reputation score that we see for Jon Skeet is the overflow

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    To be more precise, his reputation overflows approximately once per 23.99999 hours, giving the appearance of increasing by about 250 per day. – Mechanical snail Aug 5 '12 at 8:39

It goes to MIN_INT and the rest of us get to look down on him for a few days.

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    I almost want Jeff to set Jon's rep to MAX_INT - 200 and see what happens...hilarity might ensue. – Thomas Owens Jul 2 '09 at 14:20
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    Ha-ha. Irrelevant but funny: I unlocked a new achievement: my month reputation exceeded 10% of Jon's month reputation. – Costique Jan 18 '12 at 20:58

He saves the Princess!

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    I wonder if Jon Skeet does an Up-Up-Down-Down-Left-Right-Left-Right-B-A before posting. Is that his secret? – sal Sep 14 '09 at 4:09
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    I believe it's "Up-Vote Up-Vote Down-Vote Down-Vote Edit Retag Edit Retag Vote-to-close Check-Rep". And yes, he gets to vote four times per question if he so chooses. – corsiKa Feb 17 '11 at 18:17

Q. What happens when Jon Skeet’s reputation exceeds the limit for the data type holding it?

A. A stackoverflowpocalypse aka a skeetoverflow


Look, this is Jon Skeet we're talking about. Obviously we have a new Jon Skeet fact:

  • When Jon Skeet's reputation threatens to overflow the type used to represent reputation, the type automatically doubles in size to accomodate.

When JS gets MAX_INT score the whole site will fall in a stack overflow.


Microsoft makes a bigger data type.

  • what does microsoft have to do with anything? – 0x6C38 Aug 15 '13 at 0:56

Since we're programmers here, we're try to reproduce the issue when that happens so that most straightforward thing to do would be staring at Marc Gravell's reputation and refreshing the page to see what's going to happen.


This data type stores all our reputation

JohnSkeet_Var Reputation = 99999999999999^9999999999^99999999999^999999999999

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