Among the many schwag items that we're considering is the Stack Overflow Beer Stein. For those of us who don't like to drink our delicious brewed beverages from a simple 16 oz. glass, it will be a hearty 25 oz. beast, equipped for even the longest coding binges.

The only thing is, we need a witty or creative saying (or drawing or something) to put on the glass.

So — we need your help! Come up with something funny to go on the mug (it should somehow involve both programming and beer, of course) or help by just voting on your favorites.

One entry per answer please (so people can vote).

Whoever writes the winning line gets the first one!

Now available!


Update: the Stack Exchange store is permanently closed.

  • Some of the answers deal with SO specifically, others with the SE sites generally. Not sure what the intention was.
    – msh210
    May 12, 2011 at 21:14
  • 3
    To be clear: is this printed with color-changing ink or not?
    – Jan Fabry
    Jun 8, 2011 at 12:19
  • @Jan: sadly, it is not.
    – Pops
    Jun 8, 2011 at 13:49

13 Answers 13


Coors has put a lot of effort into its "cold activated cans" campaign, at least in the US. Basically, they've done some chemistry with inks/dyes on their labels that make them change color when the beverages are cooled to a good drinking temperature (illustration). Apparently, the fancy name for this is thermochromism.

Stack Overflow steins should just have images of the voting buttons on the side, with the upvote button changing color to orange when in the cold, "containing beer" state.

The problem with this, of course, is that it's not good for i18n; residents of some countries prefer warm beer, I've heard. ← Apparently, that's just a myth. Thanks, commenters!

Possible problems: gray-to-orange ink might be prohibitively expensive to use on a stein, might be toxic and might not even exist. Same for clear-to-green ink.

EDIT: There are existing clear-to-green, clear-to-orange and yellow-to-orange inks for drinkware! I don't know how appropriate they would be for this project, but this is definitely encouraging. Source: the Mug Spray Color Chart (PDF) at this manufacturer website.

Really, really quick mockup:


The number of "votes" to have, whether to include the SO logo, and other details are subject to change.

  • 13
    The up arrow could be transparent and get filled in with the color of your beer. I'd also add hover text: This beer is useful (drink to undo)
    – yhw42
    Apr 22, 2011 at 16:38
  • @yhw42, I could go for that. It'd look quite weird on St. Patrick's Day, though. The tooltip is great!
    – Pops
    Apr 22, 2011 at 16:42
  • 1
    I suggest a 1:1 relationship between number of votes and capacity of the mug in oz. :)
    Apr 22, 2011 at 16:49
  • 2
    @mootinator, that's why I chose 25 for the mockup: "it will be a hearty 25oz beast"
    – Pops
    Apr 22, 2011 at 16:49
  • What, me, read the OP? :/
    Apr 22, 2011 at 16:53
  • 11
    The check mark should go away when empty. Apr 22, 2011 at 17:30
  • 3
    As someone who lives in a country where we allegedly prefer warm beer; let me assure you: not so much... Apr 25, 2011 at 13:10
  • @Marc, so what is the preferred temperature for "you people"? FWIW, I've been to several establishments in the US that refrigerate their beer and freeze their glasses, which is really about as far as you can go, cooling-wise.
    – Pops
    Apr 25, 2011 at 14:28
  • 2
    We drink our beer so cold, we have to lick it!
    – Pekka
    Apr 25, 2011 at 15:09
  • Ohhhhh boy. onlyicecream.com/…
    – Pekka
    Apr 25, 2011 at 15:19
  • 9
    @Popular - whatever temperature it is right now; that's the ideal temperature. Now stop wittering and pour... Apr 25, 2011 at 15:20
  • 1
    fl.oz., really? Think international people! (Pints, by preference) Oh, and can the Up Arrow && the Tick light up? How much would that cost? I think that the "warm beer" thing is a myth, seems to have been in Germany pre-1930. No one* drinks lagers warm by choice csulb.edu/~parayner/WarmorCold.html Apr 25, 2011 at 15:59
  • 10
    I think the biggest challenge will be getting the stein to change shapes the way it does in the photo.
    – Phil Lello
    Apr 25, 2011 at 19:22
  • I know what's going to be on my birthday list ...
    – C. Ross
    May 3, 2011 at 18:26
  • 3
    So is it printed with colour changing ink? The store doesn't mention that... Jun 8, 2011 at 11:58

Always 5 o'clock in Iceland

stein with Stack Overflow rendered with head

(Or however you draw head.)

  • 4
    lol that has got to be the worst beer drawing ever. I love it! +1 Apr 22, 2011 at 16:46
  • 2
    why is the beer smoking? =:-)
    – Sklivvz
    Apr 22, 2011 at 17:00
  • 2
    @Skliwz: You mean "what is the beer smoking" ;-) Whatever it is... I want some!
    – fretje
    Apr 25, 2011 at 18:51
  • Were you drunk when you drew that?
    – Phil Lello
    Apr 25, 2011 at 19:23
  • Is this an attempt at recursion?
    – user50049
    Jun 8, 2011 at 13:31

Standard Stack Overflow logo on the side, with

My code's compiling.

on the bottom of the stein, readable only by those watching you drain the the last drop.

XKCD for reference.


Original Voting Beer Stein™

Motivational Beer Stein - Stack Overflow

  • 13
    Fastest drunk in the west, I see.
    – Grace Note StaffMod
    Apr 25, 2011 at 16:41

The really obvious answer:

ballmer peak

  • Yep, this suggestion was definitely the first one around the office. Want to come up with our own thing though. Apr 22, 2011 at 15:56
  • 5
    Or maybe just the first pane by itself.
    – user102937
    Apr 22, 2011 at 15:56
  • 2
    But what's an xkcd without a mouse hover? That would require some heat sensitive paint to show when the stein is empty! ;-)
    – Arjan
    Apr 22, 2011 at 16:26
  • 1
    Have the mouseover be on the otherside of the print. Like when they put them on the soft drink bottles @arj
    – random
    Apr 22, 2011 at 17:19
  • @random you're doing it wrong. The onhover goes on the inside so that you look over the rim to see it. That way you could do two such prints concurrently if you felt so inclined.
    – jcolebrand
    Apr 22, 2011 at 23:07

I'll go with simplicity..

Let The Beer Overflow

  • 1
    Such a waste ...
    – jcolebrand
    Apr 22, 2011 at 23:17


try {
  for (;;) {
    while (beer) drink(beer);
  } catch (OutOfMoneyException e) {
  } finally {

We'll be finished in 6-8 weeks!


enter image description here


Half way down the stein, there should be a line:

| Overflow| 
|         | 
|         |---\ 
|         |   |
----------|   | 
|Time to  |   |
|fill up  |---/
|         | 
|         |

Or "Halfway to Overflow".

Beer Moderator ♦
279k  80 ◦  204 ・  5253 •
  • Obviously more clever name, rep, and badge counts would make this better but I do not possess "the funny" Apr 22, 2011 at 16:05
  • For badges (if this design is pursued) you need an icon for Hops, one for Barley, and one for Water. (I choose barley on account of I like malted barley beer, but that's just me). So they could be in that order too, and some ratio'd percentage-average of many beer types?
    – jcolebrand
    Apr 22, 2011 at 23:14

Credit for this should go to Pan Piskor Troglodytes for using it on a post of mine, but how about this? Maybe change bed to pub/bar, or drinking your beer, etc.

enter image description here

Sourced from http://xkcd.com/386/

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