It's simple, simply write the shortest code to raise a TypeError.

In Python you can do:

raise TypeError

However it should be shorter with a code that gives a TypeError without raising it.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ this isn't really defined for other languages. You've also immediately answered the shortest possible way for Python... \$\endgroup\$ – Jo King Jul 31 '19 at 2:29
  • \$\begingroup\$ @JoKing I answer one out of 3 or more, feel free to post the other 3 byte ones \$\endgroup\$ – U10-Forward Jul 31 '19 at 2:30
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ This shouldn't be closed, but it's only well-defined for one language (Python) \$\endgroup\$ – MilkyWay90 Jul 31 '19 at 2:31
  • 6
    \$\begingroup\$ I'm retracting my close vote, since this is pretty clear. But I'm downvoting this because it is an extremely simple challenge with an obvious optimal answer with no possibility of improvement. \$\endgroup\$ – Jo King Jul 31 '19 at 2:37
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ Oh right, you might want to post your challenges to the Sandbox before you post this here. \$\endgroup\$ – a'_' Jul 31 '19 at 3:27
for chr1 in range(32, 128):
  for chr2 in range(32, 128):
    for chr3 in range(32, 128):
      code = chr(chr1) + chr(chr2) + chr(chr3)
        output = exec(code, {})
      except TypeError:

Try it online!

A naive search may result that you cannot trigger a TypeError within 2 characters. You may get a TypeError with 3 characters. All solutions including:

1. Math operator, non-numeric types

  • Math operator including +, -, ~
  • Non-numeric types including "", (), [], id, {}

2. Invoke number as function


3. Matrix multiplication between numbers

@ is __matmul__ in python, read more here


4. Binary operator with float / complex number


5. Iterate over number

Thanks to @Dennis to point out this.

You may iterate some variable by star operator. And () for a tuple may be omitted.


Python 3, 3 bytes


Try it online!

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Uh oh. I can not make my program less than 3 bytes. Anyway, nice trick! \$\endgroup\$ – a'_' Jul 31 '19 at 2:31
  • \$\begingroup\$ @A__ Yeah, anyway you can post the other 3 byte ones \$\endgroup\$ – U10-Forward Jul 31 '19 at 2:31

Python, 3 bytes

This is self-explanatory. The unary - operator does not take a string argument. This was covered in @tsh's solution above.


Try it online!

Another one:


Try it online!

  • \$\begingroup\$ Haha yeah nice idea i still have more than 2 different styles in mind tho \$\endgroup\$ – U10-Forward Jul 31 '19 at 2:35
  • \$\begingroup\$ yeah, double quotes and that's about it \$\endgroup\$ – Jo King Jul 31 '19 at 2:36
  • \$\begingroup\$ There is also -id and +id \$\endgroup\$ – Jo King Jul 31 '19 at 2:38

JavaScript (V8), 4 bytes


Try it online!


.code.tio:1: TypeError: 1 is not a function 1.() ^ TypeError: 1 is not a function at .code.tio:1:3


Japt, 1 byte

Throws TypeError: U.í is not a function


Test it (Errors are displayed below the output field)

Or, a bit less trivial:

Japt, 2 bytes

Throws TypeError: (U++) is not a function


Test it


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