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The Ballmer Peak




If you are going to be writing any code you can probably use all the help you can get, and in that line you better be aware of the "Ballmer Peak".

Legend has it that drinking alcohol impairs your ability to write code, BUT there is a curious peak somewhere in the vicinity of a 0.14 BAC where programmers attain almost super-human programming skill. The XKCD below tries to explain the finer nuances.

But seriously many studies have shown that there is some truth to this in the sense that an increase in BAC may remove inhibitions which stifle creativity. 

It is believed the name really came from Balmer (with one L) series which are sudden peaks in the emmision spectrum of Hydrogen which was discovered in 1885 by Johan Balmer, but since this is about programming that soon got converted to Ballmer after the former CEO of Microsoft who did tend to behave like he was on such a peak on stage from time to time.(see  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I14b-C67EXY)

Either way, we are just going to believe that this one is true - confirmation bias and all, really - just Google it ! 🙂





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