The blind god’s computer language


They have no com­piler, only an ac­cre­tor that gloms ad­di­tional code onto the ex­ist­ing bi­nary. I use the word bi­nary loosely; it is not un­com­mon for them to “im­prove” fun­da­men­tally flawed data struc­tures by mov­ing to a larger base no­ta­tion—to tri­nary, then quadrary, etc. At this point, some of their prod­ucts are in base 17.
They never go back to fix bugs where they oc­cur. They write new code to workaround the ear­lier failure case. I asked why they don’t go back and just fix the bug where it hap­pens. I was told “We can’t go back and change it. That code’s already done!” Their solu­tion for in­sur­ing that failing code will be able to get to its workaround is the GOTO state­ment. GOTO is sprin­kled liber­ally around other code, point­ing to func­tions and rou­tines that do not ex­ist yet. If, down the road, it is dis­cov­ered that the old code has a bug, they find out which GOTOs ex­ist in that code that do not point to any­thing yet, pick one, and write the workaround there.
I could go on, but I am be­ing told that we need to cel­e­brate the suc­cess­ful com­pila­tion (by which I mean ac­cre­tion) of a par­tic­u­larly com­plex workaround for a bug that has been known about for two years.