The C program source (written by Brian Westley aka Merlyn LeRoy):

a(X){/*/X=- a(X){/*/X=- -1;F;X=- -1;F;X=- -1;F;}/*/ -1;F;}/*/ char*z[]={"char*z[]={","a(X){/*/X=-","-1;F;X=-","-1;F;}/*/","9999999999 :-| ", "int q,i,j,k,X,O=0,H;S(x)int*x;{X+=X;O+=O;*x+1?*x+2||X++:O++;*x=1;}L(n){for(*", "z[i=1]=n+97;i<4;i++)M(256),s(i),M(128),s(i),M(64),N;X*=8;O*=8;}s(R){char*r=z", "[R];for(q&&Q;*r;)P(*r++);q&&(Q,P(44));}M(m){P(9);i-2||P(X&m?88:O&m?48:32);P(", "9);}y(A){for(j=8;j;)~A&w[--j]||(q=0);}e(W,Z){for(i-=i*q;i<9&&q;)y(W|(1<<i++&", "~Z));}R(){for(k=J[*J-48]-40;k;)e(w[k--],X|O);}main(u,v)char**v;{a(q=1);b(1);", "c(1);*J=--u?O?*J:*v[1]:53;X|=u<<57-*v[u];y(X);K=40+q;q?e(O,X),q&&(K='|'),e(X", ",O),R(),O|=1<<--i:J[*J-48+(X=O=0)]--;L(q=0);for(s(i=0);q=i<12;)s(i++),i>4&&N", ";s(q=12);P(48);P('}');P(59);N;q=0;L(1);for(i=5;i<13;)s(i++),N;L(2);}",0}; b(X){/*/X=- b(X){/*/X=- -1;F;X=- -1;F;X=- -1;F;}/*/ -1;F;}/*/ int q,i,j,k,X,O=0,H;S(x)int*x;{X+=X;O+=O;*x+1?*x+2||X++:O++;*x=1;}L(n){for(* z[i=1]=n+97;i<4;i++)M(256),s(i),M(128),s(i),M(64),N;X*=8;O*=8;}s(R){char*r=z [R];for(q&&Q;*r;)P(*r++);q&&(Q,P(44));}M(m){P(9);i-2||P(X&m?88:O&m?48:32);P( 9);}y(A){for(j=8;j;)~A&w[--j]||(q=0);}e(W,Z){for(i-=i*q;i<9&&q;)y(W|(1<<i++& ~Z));}R(){for(k=J[*J-48]-40;k;)e(w[k--],X|O);}main(u,v)char**v;{a(q=1);b(1); c(1);*J=--u?O?*J:*v[1]:53;X|=u<<57-*v[u];y(X);K=40+q;q?e(O,X),q&&(K='|'),e(X ,O),R(),O|=1<<--i:J[*J-48+(X=O=0)]--;L(q=0);for(s(i=0);q=i<12;)s(i++),i>4&&N ;s(q=12);P(48);P('}');P(59);N;q=0;L(1);for(i=5;i<13;)s(i++),N;L(2);} c(X){/*/X=- c(X){/*/X=- -1;F;X=- -1;F;X=- -1;F;}/*/ -1;F;}/*/
(The remarks below are copied from the book Objuscated C and other Mysteries, by Don Libes, pages 392-394.)

This program plays tic-tac-toe. Did you guess that already? Well, you couldn't guess how bizarre a tic-tac-toe game can be until you've seen this program! It plays tic-tac-toe on itself. The code is written as a tic-tac-toe grid; moves are carried out within the cource code. As if that weren't enough, this program gets better over time as it plays, by producing improved copies of its own source code!

This initial compile line is:


cc -DP=putchar -DN="P(10)" -DQ="P(34)" -DF="S(&X)" -DJ="z[4]" -DK="J[14]" \ -DH="w[]={146,7,292,73,448,56,84,273,325,297,108,324,22,40,48,40,17,325}" \ westley.c -o westley
and string constants in the code must be writable. In the following discussion, the tic-tac-toe positions are numbered 1 to 9, row-wise from upper left-hand corner to lower right. For example, 2 refers to the top row, center column.

The program, when run, reproduces itself with both the player's move (X) and the computer's move (0) added. Recompile this program (using the same compile line) and repeat until the game is finished.

As an example, in response to "westley 3", the program prints:


a(X){/*/X=- a(X){/*/X=- -1;F;X=- -1;F;X=- X -1;F;}/*/ -1;F;}/*/ char*z[]={"char*z[]={","a(X){/*/X=-","-1;F;X=-","-1;F;}/*/","3999999999 :-| ", "int q,i,j,k,X,O=0,H;S(x)int*x;{X+=X;O+=O;*x+1?*x+2||X++:O++;*x=1;}L(n){for(*", "z[i=1]=n+97;i<4;i++)M(256),s(i),M(128),s(i),M(64),N;X*=8;O*=8;}s(R){char*r=z", "[R];for(q&&Q;*r;)P(*r++);q&&(Q,P(44));}M(m){P(9);i-2||P(X&m?88:O&m?48:32);P(", "9);}y(A){for(j=8;j;)~A&w[--j]||(q=0);}e(W,Z){for(i-=i*q;i<9&&q;)y(W|(1<<i++&", "~Z));}R(){for(k=J[*J-48]-40;k;)e(w[k--],X|O);}main(u,v)char**v;{a(q=1);b(1);", "c(1);*J=--u?O?*J:*v[1]:53;X|=u<<57-*v[u];y(X);K=40+q;q?e(O,X),q&&(K='|'),e(X", ",O),R(),O|=1<<--i:J[*J-48+(X=O=0)]--;L(q=0);for(s(i=0);q=i<12;)s(i++),i>4&&N", ";s(q=12);P(48);P('}');P(59);N;q=0;L(1);for(i=5;i<13;)s(i++),N;L(2);}",0}; b(X){/*/X=- b(X){/*/X=- -1;F;X=- -1;F;X=- -1;F;}/*/ -1;F;}/*/ int q,i,j,k,X,O=0,H;S(x)int*x;{X+=X;O+=O;*x+1?*x+2||X++:O++;*x=1;}L(n){for(* z[i=1]=n+97;i<4;i++)M(256),s(i),M(128),s(i),M(64),N;X*=8;O*=8;}s(R){char*r=z [R];for(q&&Q;*r;)P(*r++);q&&(Q,P(44));}M(m){P(9);i-2||P(X&m?88:O&m?48:32);P( 9);}y(A){for(j=8;j;)~A&w[--j]||(q=0);}e(W,Z){for(i-=i*q;i<9&&q;)y(W|(1<<i++& ~Z));}R(){for(k=J[*J-48]-40;k;)e(w[k--],X|O);}main(u,v)char**v;{a(q=1);b(1); c(1);*J=--u?O?*J:*v[1]:53;X|=u<<57-*v[u];y(X);K=40+q;q?e(O,X),q&&(K='|'),e(X ,O),R(),O|=1<<--i:J[*J-48+(X=O=0)]--;L(q=0);for(s(i=0);q=i<12;)s(i++),i>4&&N ;s(q=12);P(48);P('}');P(59);N;q=0;L(1);for(i=5;i<13;)s(i++),N;L(2);} c(X){/*/X=- c(X){/*/X=- -1;F;X=- 0 -1;F;X=- -1;F;}/*/ -1;F;}/*/
If the computer wins, the face in the upper right-hand corner (:-|) will smile (:-)). If it is a draw the face does not change. If the computer loses, it changes to a sad face (:-(). If this happens, the whole board should replace the original program; the computer changes its play and will continue to do so until it no longer loses games.

If you want a program that never loses, replace the string "9999999999 :-|" with "9883857753 :-|".

Sample complete game.