Somewhere in the book, Jarda has a picture of the "Will Code HTML For Food" guy. it illustrates a point he's making in the book, about how programmers are needed everywhere, often regardless of skill. However, the publisher told him that the quality of the pic isn't very good, so yesterday Jan Chalupa took some pics of ourselves, so that we'd have a range of options to pick from, to replace the original low quality one. It was quite fun and we ended up with dozens of pics. Here are my personal favorites, one of each of the models that took part (Jaroslav Tulach, Tomas Stupka, David Simonek, and me):
The point of showing the above gallery of sad coders is that... they are here to inspire you because you can win a copy of Jarda's book, once it is released (sometime this year, probably). To win, get a pic such as the above taken of yourself. You need to look pathetic and sad. Or maybe not pathetic or sad, but edgy and toughened by life having punched you in the face. If your eyes are slightly crazed, reddened, and bulging, that's good too. Preferably you'll be displaying some weird or funny mismatch in clothing, corresponding to your supposed level of mental disarray. The background can be important too—if there's lots of graffiti in the background, for example, you could add a sense of desperation to the scene. Standing under a bridge also works. Rain would help as well. You'll need to be holding up a cardboard sign saying "Will Code HTML For Food" (or claiming you'll do something else programming-related for food). Then send it to me (geertjan DOT wielenga AT sun DOT com) and when the book is released the most pathetic picture will win a copy, signed by Jarda himself. Watch this space for further announcements and pics of early participants in this competition.