The “I bet I know more computer languages than you, and I’m not afraid to talk about it” badge.


It could get ugly when two or more of these recipients get together.



  1. Once at university, someone asked the group how many programming languages they had used. When I did a count of languages I had used for at least a computer science assignment I came up with more than 30. Now, that does *not* include dialects. If I count the number of architectures I’ve written assembly language for, the number of 1980s’ vintage BASIC dialects and all the dialects of Pascal and Smalltalk I’ve used the number comes closer to 50.

    So, I won that, with the runner up scoring 8.

  2. one of my favourites: having started programming when computers were either “big iron” owned by multi-national corporations and major governments, or were assembled by geeks as miniature kits you could purchase from the advertising pages of argosy, captain marvel cartoons, or popular mechanics… i think i stopped counting when i hit 70, more than 20 years ago… :)

  3. I stopped counting a long time ago. I think we need another level – “I’ve implemented compilers for more programming languages than you even know how to use,” or something.

  4. I’d say five, but I’d be lying. I’m really rather rusty at hex. So, it’ll only be six again if we’re counting wiki-markup.

  5. Definitely levels; say a bottom open level, and 50, and 100? Those may actually be too high, I’ve worked in software since 1969 and I’m not sure I can honestly claim 50, not separate languages (I set aside here the rather wide degree of difference between Fortran 99, Fortran IV, AFIT Improved Fortran, and NCE Load-and-Go Fortran).

    Another one for inventing languages and/or implementing compilers would be interesting. Special high-level version of that for languages that have ever been used *by anybody else* :-).

    And I’m not counting Wiki markup or HTML or Wordstar markup or Runoff or nroff or TeX or any of those things that are NOT PROGRAMMING LANGUAGES even if they’re Turing-complete. Hmmm, maybe I’m going overboard on excluding things there. But HTML? So not!

  6. I think there should be an additional “I’ve forgotten more programming languages than you will ever know” badge for those of us who have been programming for so long that languages have become obsolete.

  7. You could prune the number by requiring that you got paid to write said code. (my total is around 20 paid, twice that if just dabbling counts)

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