Most beauteous visuals

Vincent Weaver

  Ithaca, NY


Judges' comments

Improved Version

This following improved version of the submission will run on SGI Irix and also has the recursive CPP macro (which snuck in accidentally) removed.


To build

Before building, make sure that you have the OpenGL development libraries installed.

  cc -Wall -O2 -o vince vince.c -L/usr/X11R6/lib -lGL -lGLU -lX11

If you are on a 64 bit platform you might need to substitute "-L/usr/X11R6/lib64".

To run


Under MacOSX run from within an xterm while the X11 server is running.

Author's comments


  • The executable needs to read in its own source code in order to run. As long as the source is in the same directory as the executable it should be able to find it...
  • The program requires the OpenGL library.
  • The program abuses severely the whitespace and { } ; exceptions in the filesize limits.


  • OpenGL. It works (slowly) with Mesa.
  • 16bpp graphics capability (but might work at other depths)
  • The original source needs to be in the same directory as the executable, and the source's name should be the same as the executable but with .c on the end.


I was annoyed after the last IOCCC because I slaved away on a clever text based game only to find all of the game winners used X11. X11 isn't standard C!

So to one up them, I decided to use OpenGL. It's standard, and most Unix-like systems these days have either accelerated graphics or else software rendering.


It was a challenge getting the source code below the 2k limit. OpenGL has way too many GRATUITOUSLY_LONG_CONSTANTS and glLongStudlyFunctionNames();

Therefore, much of the obfuscation comes secondary to just reducing the code size to fit under the limit while still having some semblance of a demo.

There are some interesting abuses scattered about.


Try hitting the spacebar when the program is running.

For Fun

Try modifying the texture to your own custom design...


Many thanks to John Clemens for testing this on various machines for me.

Errors you can get

 0 = no error
1 = X problem
2 = Can't open glx
3 = Can't open 16bpp visual
4 = can't open source file