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Sunday, June 08, 2008

Angels and Monkeys

You know, I have heard endless numbers of atheists make fun of the Middle Ages because philosophers debated how many angels could dance on the head of a pin.

Today, we are much more sophisticated.

We argue about how many monkeys it would take to type a legible sentence on a typewriter.

Which just goes to show that technology DOES transform discussions.



Jordanes said...

How many angels could dance on the head of a pin? All of them.

How many monkeys would have to bang on typewriters before they had randomly generated the text of Shakespeare's Hamlet? None of them -- the odds against it are so huge as to be impossible, so you may as well save your typewriters from monkey vandalism.

YaknYeti said...

I wish I had been the one to devise this response:
"It is said that, given an infinite number of monkeys working at typewriters, they will eventually reproduce the works of Shakespeare. Now, thanks to the Internet, we know that is untrue."

Enbrethiliel said...


I hadn't thought of that, Steve! =D

I'd rather be "a little lower than the Angels" than a little higher than monkeys, any day.