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I asked this question in a chat forum the other day but I decided to post it here to get an official answer started. I'd like to know if there is a way to change my profile picture to a newly random image (I believe it is called an identicon?). To try and make this point more clear, currently my image is this:

enter image description here

and I would like it to be one of the many random possible images like these identicons.

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  • $\begingroup$ Because you can set your profile picture to any image of the proper dimensions, I suppose you could grab any identicon you like and use that. That seems like an abuse of the identicon idea, though, kind of like adopting someone else's name or national identity number: although nobody on the Internet can stop you, what's the point? $\endgroup$
    – whuber Mod
    Sep 18, 2013 at 20:49
  • $\begingroup$ Oh but I guess at the heart of my question is whether or not you can generate a new one randomly by using the options given to you by Cross validated? $\endgroup$
    – user25658
    Sep 18, 2013 at 20:50
  • $\begingroup$ My impression was that this randomly generated image was a function of your email address (no idea where I got that impression but I might have heard it somewhere). You could try changing your email address (if that's possible) and see what happens. Or, you could hack it like whuber says (I'd also wonder why...). $\endgroup$
    – Macro
    Sep 18, 2013 at 20:51
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    $\begingroup$ BabakP (cc @Macro) I don't understand: the identicon is neither a CV nor an SE service. $\endgroup$
    – whuber Mod
    Sep 18, 2013 at 20:51
  • $\begingroup$ @whuber, It was just a question of curiosity. I don't particularly like my identicon and was wondering what the options were to change it in a "random" fashion through the site. I had assumed the site was the one that created my identicon (which I was wrong about) since the site was the one that gave it to me. $\endgroup$
    – user25658
    Sep 18, 2013 at 20:56
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    $\begingroup$ @Macro (cc @Whuber) So am I not allowed to ask a question or have an opinion on whether or not I like my identicon? not quite sure why this question is being so aggressively answered, all that i asked was whether or not there was a feature on CV that would allow me to generate a "random" identicon. I thought the point of the support tag was to ask questions about support for CV that you could not reasonably find through the site itself. $\endgroup$
    – user25658
    Sep 18, 2013 at 21:22
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    $\begingroup$ I don't think anyone said you weren't allowed to have an opinion about, or ask questions about, identicons. My comment should be parsed as "It seems like whuber's comment answered your question. If not, what did he miss? If so, maybe you could mark the question as answered. Since it turns out the answer was pretty trivial, I'd understand if you want to delete the question." I don't know what I've said that would be interpreted as aggressive but please accept my blanket apology for inadvertently offending you. $\endgroup$
    – Macro
    Sep 18, 2013 at 21:27
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    $\begingroup$ Yes it was sarcastic (what is why I said "Seriously though, ..." afterwards). It was an attempt at humor. No one ever said I was funny :-) $\endgroup$
    – Macro
    Sep 18, 2013 at 21:32
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    $\begingroup$ Well that's a shame. To speak from experience, I didn't sign on this site for several months after a few particularly irritating encounters and, upon returning, I've found that the site is a lot more enjoyable (albeit, maybe a little less "exciting") when you're less emotionally invested. I hope, as an active contributor, you'll reconsider after cooling off. Cheers. $\endgroup$
    – Macro
    Sep 18, 2013 at 21:51
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    $\begingroup$ @Gavin I believe you can get a different identicon by signing on as an anonymous user (which you might have to do from another computer). BabakP, please take a moment to re-read these comments: I see only friendly conversation. It is good to remember that the nuances of live interpersonal communication are lost in text, so even the politest statements can sometimes be misinterpreted. If this interchange offends you, then I wish you luck with any text communication on the Internet, because you will experience the same problems anywhere. Have some trust in us and our goodwill towards you! $\endgroup$
    – whuber Mod
    Sep 18, 2013 at 22:24
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    $\begingroup$ I want to 2nd whuber & @Macro's comments here, BabakP. I'm not sure if you meant you're done w/ this question / thread, or w/ CV altogether, but I hope it's not the latter. I've upvoted many of your posts & I hope you'll stay. Having known these people for a while, I have some sense of how to interpret their comments, & I don't think they were meant as aggressive. What you have asked strikes me as an unusual, but perfectly acceptable, request. There's been some fumbling attempting to understand the motivation behind it, but I'm sure no offense was intended; no one ever said Macro was funny. $\endgroup$ Sep 19, 2013 at 2:08
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    $\begingroup$ @Gung, I think you have been one of the nicest and most supportive people I have had the pleasure of trading comments with. I really respect your commitment to this site and your kind words. $\endgroup$
    – user25658
    Sep 19, 2013 at 5:22
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    $\begingroup$ @BabakP Lastly, you are not alone in getting annoyed with SE sometimes (I think it happens with everybody for many reasons). I also second whuber. Other places on internet are not so different. I hope you come back one day. Success. $\endgroup$ Sep 19, 2013 at 14:01
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    $\begingroup$ @BabakP I'll also second the comments of gung, whuber, macro et al here & state that I am sorry that you feel compelled to leave the Cross Validated community. Your contributions here have been appreciated by many. I'm not sure if it is just this comment thread, or others, but do heed whuber's point about the brevity of commenting & online conversations, which take place without the visual & body language cues that we take for granted in the real world. I'm sure, here at least, no ill will was meant. If I've said anything to contribute to your decision, I am sorry; it certainly was not intentional! $\endgroup$ Sep 19, 2013 at 14:58
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    $\begingroup$ I'd like to add my wishes that you take some time to reconsider. You've made some very valuable contributions and it would be a loss to the people seeking help on CV if you weren't to come back. I don't think anyone who participated in this thread had any bad intent toward you at all; it's very easy to gain a mistaken impression in on-line discussions (I have done so many times myself). $\endgroup$
    – Glen_b
    Sep 19, 2013 at 21:33

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As far as I know, there is no way to currently force one of our sites to generate a new identicon for you.

On the bright site, you can upload any other image to be your avatar. It can certainly be another identicon, but you'll probably have to take care of generating one yourself. I'm willing to bet there are sites out there that can produce an identicon for you.


As an aside, I'm sorry to hear that you're set on leaving the site now over the discussion here in comments. Communicating via text can be confusing and it looks to me like there's been a bit of miscommunication here.

Your contributions to this site have clearly been appreciated by the community, and you would be missed. So, I would like to ask you to reconsider. Give it a day or so, think things over. If you're still set on leaving then, fill out the form here and we'll take care of the deletion for you.

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