Coding Horror

programming and human factors

Eric Lippert's Purple Crayon

Eric Lippert is one of my favorite Microsoft bloggers. He's one of those people who reminds you that Microsoft, despite all its problems, still employs a lot of incredibly thoughtful, near-genius programmers. Take a look at his greatest hits:

But really, it's hard to single out any one post. I could go on and on with the hyperlinks. Eric has the singular gift of all great communicators: he can make any topic interesting.

Unfortunately, every time I visit Eric's blog for yet another Fabulous Adventure in Coding, my eyes are assaulted by the unholy combination of purple and Lucida Sans Unicode:

some hot, sweet purple Lucida Sans Unicode action

Ow. Ow. Ow. Seriously. Ow. Why?

I'm reminded of a certain Harold who is also quite fond of purple.

Harold's Purple Crayon

I understand we all have our own personal quirks. But it's been over three years now. I'm staging an intervention, right now, right here. Your content is incredible, Eric, but the presentation is killing your poor readers' eyesight. It's time to let go of the purple crayon. Have pity on your sad, weary-eyed readers. We're begging you.

We're not asking you to give up your individuality. You can keep the Tilley Hat.

* even Eric's throwaway comments are worthy of entire blog posts.

Written by Jeff Atwood

Indoor enthusiast. Co-founder of Stack Overflow and Discourse. Disclaimer: I have no idea what I'm talking about. Find me here: