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The Truth about Monkeys and Typewriters

Discussion in 'Channel Zero' started by Weapon X, May 14, 2003.

  1. Weapon X

    Weapon X 12oz Loyalist

    Joined: Sep 6, 2002 Messages: 14,905 Likes Received: 202
    from cbc.ca

    Writing great literature no monkey business
    Last Updated Fri, 09 May 2003 14:51:36
    LONDON - Professional and aspiring writers can relax, knowing that not even a great editor would be able to save the copy produced by a group of monkeys in Britain.

    A group of students and professors at the University of Plymouth set up an experiment to test the idea that an infinite number of monkeys, working on an infinite number of typewriters, would eventually produce the complete works of Shakespeare.

    Six Sulawesi crested macaques at the Paignton Zoo were set up with a single computer for a month.

    "The first thing they did was to bring a large stone and try to smash up the computer," said Mike Phillips, director of the university's Institute of Digital Arts and Technology. "But I think that can be seen as a very definite act of creativity."

    Between bouts of attacking and even defecating on the machine, Elmo, Gum, Heather, Holly, Mistletoe and Rowan produced five pages, mostly consisting of S.

    Later passages came to include A, J, L and M. Not a sonnet could be mined from the bunch. No limericks, either.

    Phillips said the monkeys aren't very good in English.

    He defended the experiment as neither a waste of effort nor money. The project was endowed with about $5,000.

    The experiment was set up as part of a larger project.

    And even if there was little an editor could do with the results, the monkeys have found a publisher. Their collected works will be printed as Notes Towards the Complete Works of Shakespeare.

    Written by CBC News Online staff

    useless thread number goobledygock/ blame it on the rain.
  2. Stats-KC-

    Stats-KC- New Jack

    Joined: Jan 8, 2002 Messages: 6 Likes Received: 0
    monkeys... you gotta love them.
  3. vinyl junkie

    vinyl junkie Elite Member

    Joined: Jan 17, 2002 Messages: 4,725 Likes Received: 0
    ok, since we don't have the resources to have an infinite number of monkeys and typewriters, they could have at least given each monkey it's own one...
    and the saying says typewriters, not computers...

    i mean, come on people, you gotta stay scientific...
  4. Stats-KC-

    Stats-KC- New Jack

    Joined: Jan 8, 2002 Messages: 6 Likes Received: 0
    lets send them all into space to conduct scientific experiments. then theyll come back with iq's of 300. whut whut.


    Joined: Apr 30, 2002 Messages: 711 Likes Received: 0
    And then it'll be like planet of the apes. I was actually going to make a thread about this, but I just kind of forgot to I guess.
  6. SteveAustin

    SteveAustin Veteran Member

    Joined: Mar 12, 2002 Messages: 7,042 Likes Received: 2
    seriously...how do you get a job like this. I want to be able to decide to spend 10k on teaching rhinos to jump rope...and have someone accept it.
  7. Dick Quickwood

    Dick Quickwood 12oz Loyalist

    Joined: Aug 25, 2002 Messages: 14,783 Likes Received: 14
  8. --zeSto--

    --zeSto-- Veteran Member

    Joined: Jul 12, 2000 Messages: 6,979 Likes Received: 2

    [i]"It was the best of times, it was the BLURST of times? Stupid monkeys!"[/i]
  9. dELiSs

    dELiSs Elite Member

    Joined: Dec 13, 2001 Messages: 2,898 Likes Received: 2