Most calendrical

Timo Poikola
Twitter: @timpoiko

Judges' comments:

To use:

make prog
./prog 512 ./prog

sleep 86400; make clobber prog
./prog 512 ./prog

sleep 86400; make clobber prog
./prog 512 ./prog


If you don't have a few days, try:

TZ=UTC24 make clobber prog
./prog 512 ./prog

TZ=UTC48 make clobber prog
./prog 512 ./prog

Selected Judges Remarks:

Do you have the time to see what this program does? Think again, come back and try again.

Note that 2 can be said to be the least odd prime because it is the greatest even prime. Moreover 2 can be also said to be the greatest odd prime because it is the least even prime.

The source code layout and some of the variable names honors the ski jumping accomplishments of Matti Nykänen.

Author’s comments:

How to build

gcc -O0 -o prog prog.c


clang -O[0123s] -o prog prog.c


You can generate an A3 sized poster by make docs. This command creates a pdf file poikola.pdf.

What this entry does

An old wise man mumbled to me:

Implement a program, which can calculate SHA-3 checksum for a file

I think it is easy, but the wizard didn’t stop yet:

and primes and Fibonacci numbers.

Still easy. But the Gandalf the Grey impersonator is not ready:

But use only main(), and do not use math.h nor predefined stuff at all. But wait, there are some more rules: This work should reflect the extraordinary mind of Matti Nykänen, the all-time best ski jumper and amateur philosopher, who passed away on fourth of February 2019.

Oh boys.

So, I followed the rules given by Gandalf the White and the Judges of IOCCC. Output of iocccsize, using the 2019 version of iocccsize, is carefully selected. For the sake of clarity, I used single letter variables in the code. I also avoided unnecessary use of functions. Like a tripundra, this program has three levels. In order to reveal all of them, you have to compile this program on three consecutive days.

As this is a contest for obfuscated code, the program does not perform unnecessary checks, but either fails or gets stuck if invoked erroneously. The program is invoked in this way: ./prog <integer> <file> in where <integer> is 224, 256, 384, 512 or even 1024. Yes, I know 1024 is not a supported length of output, but as I said, the program does not validate its input in any way. These same parameters should be given in calculating a Fibonacci sequence or prime numbers. Please note that maximum file size is one gigabyte.


Matti Nykänen: Every time I jump, and I get that feeling of bon voyage, the feeling that I’ve been here before.

Matti Nykänen: When you are about to jump, you are all alone and have to make your own decisions. Up there, it’s all up yours.

This code has some jumping too. I used some gotos instead of longjmp(). Some Finnish ski jumping sites are used as labels, however, there is lahti instead of salpausselkä.

SHA-3-512 Compatibility chart

Tested against test vectors. Clang-4.0: For optimization levels [0123s], the program compiles and produces correct output for every tested vector using c11, c89, c90, c99, gnu11, gnu1x, gnu89, gnu90, gnu99, iso9899:1990, iso9899:199409, iso9899:1999 and iso9899:2011 as argument of -std=

Gcc-6: For optimization level 0, correct output using c11, c99, gnu11, gnu1x, gnu89, gnu90, gnu99, iso9899:1999 and iso9899:2011

Missing a prime

For obvious reason, the oddest prime is missing from output.


Gcc and clang are very fragile compilers. I spent numerous hours trying to achieve exactly the same output from different optimization levels and compilers. Small change in code can produce really unexpected results, i.e. the compiler can skip a few expressions or statements without obvious reason.

Major spoilers

Please scroll down if you want to see spoilers.


It is commonly believed that Mike Keith’s algorithm published in Journal of Recreational Mathematics, Vol. 22, No. 4, 1990, p. 280, is the shortest way to calculate weekday for given date. Keith’s algorithm:
My algorithm: I noticed that
is one character shorter. In my solution, m<3?y--:y-2 is used directly, instead of assign value for d.

Q is pronounced in Finnish exactly like “kuu”, a word for month or the Moon. So, Q = k is intended.

Last term of outputted Fibonacci sequence is the last one smaller than 264. It is plain coincidence (but a funny) that value of ‘^’ is 94 in ASCII table.

For prime calculations: I recycled code from my high school C-programming course. Originally, I wrote it over 20 years ago. My teacher said that it is (too) complicated to use bits stored in arrays, so I did it.

Other stuff

Cody: I really like that you enjoyed my previous entry. I hope that you will like this entry too. Because I did not want to give too many clues to Judges, I tried to write this entry in a different way than Most Stellar, but in this code there is at least one recycled thing from it. By the way, answers to questions: 1. 255. 2. Try to compare binary representations of those floats and binary representation of the string “25th IOCCC!”. 3. I don’t know. I used standard trigonometric functions from math.h for rotating the Big Dipper and later replaced those functions with my own implementations. But there was a bug in my code and the effect was more beautiful than intended. I did not even debug this bug and now it works as a feature. 4. It is not possible. If you change a single bit, the Fletcher 16 checksum does not match anymore and goto jumps to end of the code.

I see that Volker Diels-Grabsch’s winner is awarded in category Most self-aware. In last year, my entry incorporates the Fletcher 16 algorithm to ensure integrity of code. One of my first ideas for this year was to do the same thing, but with SHA-3. Using Fletcher 16, calculating a checksum which matches with sleeping time factor took about one minute. I realized that SHA-3 even with 224-bit output could take too much CPU time.

I would like to say thanks to PSP, because there were not too much interrupts during the coding phase.

Creative Commons License

© Copyright 1984-2019, Leo Broukhis, Simon Cooper, Landon Curt Noll - All rights reserved
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