you know you've been hacking too long when...

Computing Dictionary

You know you've been hacking too long when... definition


The set-up line for a genre of one-liners told by hackers about themselves. These include the following:
* Not only do you check your e-mail more often than your paper mail, but you remember your network address faster than your postal one.
* Your SO kisses you on the neck and the first thing you think is "Uh, oh, priority interrupt".
* You go to balance your chequebook and discover that you're doing it in octal.
* Your computers have a higher street value than your car.
* In your universe, "round numbers" are powers of 2, not 10.
* You have woken up recalling a dream in some programming language.
* You realise you have never seen half of your best friends.
[An early version of this entry said "All but one of these have been reliably reported as hacker traits (some of them quite often). Even hackers may have trouble spotting the ringer." The ringer was balancing one's chequebook in octal, which I made up out of whole cloth. Although more respondents picked that one out as fiction than any of the others, I also received multiple independent reports of its actually happening, most famously to Grace Hopper while she was working with BINAC in 1949. - ESR]
(1995-04-07)

The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010 http://foldoc.org
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