Fun with the GitHub Code Search Beta

I like to sign up for the GitHub betas when they show up. Last year, GitHub Copilot entered beta, which generates code automatically using AI. It does a surprisingly good job, taking into account the code nearby and in other parts of the proejct. It's so good in fact, that I often use it to generate code for simple functions. They often need tweaking, or at the very least some updating to use newer language syntax, but it serves as a good base and usually saves me some time. But that's not why I'm here.

Today I received an email telling me I have access to the GitHub Code Search Beta. In comparison to Copilot, it hasn't made as much of a splash. After all, it's just an improved version of their existing code search feature. As this is on my personal site rather than my professional site (okay, admittedly there's nothing on my professional site yet), I'm not giving it a serious evaluation. I'm just here to have a bit of fun.

Needle in a haystack

I'm not here to find anything I've seen before. Let's get weird with it and see what interesting stuff we can find. I love finding that stranger parts of the internet, niche communities, and generally learning about the diversity of humanity. Could we do this with the existing GitHub code search? Yeah, probably, but the new one is here so let's give it a whirl. Where to start? Fuck, naturally.

Unfortunately, it doesn't find that much of interest. Mostly it's people mad at some code, a few profanity lists, and the like. Cunt is similar, forming parts of words in many languages. We also find explanations of the Scunthorpe problem, I am having the inverse problem. By trying to search for naughty things, I'm finding benign and boring things, such as foreign words, coincidences, typos, poor naming choices, and so on.

Mining for gold

Let's get a bit more zoomerhorny. Tiddies provides some interesting results. I'm not sure how GitHub decides to order results. Often, popular repositories are towards the beginning. Other times, not so much. The first result is for a smart contract. I shouldn't be surprised — Crypto and weird go hand in hand.

I then hit my first piece of gold: Trials in Tainted Space, or TiTS for short, a sci-fi porn game featuring large anime breasts by OXO Productions, a name I associate more with stock cubes and kitchen gadgetry than with hentai. Googling the name, I was both surprised and entirely unsurprised that it seems like it's actually fairly popular, with a fan wiki and articles on sites that, well, I've at least heard of. It seems like a mostly text based almost-RPG interactive fiction where much of the story is based on choices you make when creating your character. Sci-fi porn isn't my typical fare, but it looks interesting and weird enough that I may give it a try. 🤔

While searching for tiddies on the internet, I found another intresting repository that may make me take back my earlier accusation that tiddies is a zoomer word: an archive of source code written for the Atari ST, a not particularly popular home computer (unless you're a synthpop musician) from the 80s and 90s. Hidden in the archive is a demo called Passion that has in severl places, the comment "Fuck the stored tiddies". Maybe this is a technical term, I don't know much Motorola 68000 assembly. Or maybe searching for the etymology of "tiddy" or "tiddies" will land you here, and I can date the earliest use to at least 1994.

That's about all I had the effort to find. I'm sure there's even weirder stuff our there just waiting for me to get bored enough to find it. But this has been an interesting lesson. Part of the point of this site has been to reacquiant myself with the early period of the internet. Back then, things were pretty weird. This has been a refreshing reminder that the internet can still be a pretty weird place, you just have to look for it. And what better way to look for something than an old-fashioned search bar?