A few months ago Freya was pearling with my semi-professional bead set. Quite by accident she crafted a mosaic Gameboy, complete with angled corner, and in the process of playing Tetris.
Now, whilst it may take the monkey a very long time indeed to write the complete works of Shakespear, it only took Freya about four years to come up with this.
Wiki writes that the “monkey” is not an actual monkey; rather, it is a metaphor for an abstract device that produces a random sequence of letters ad infinitum. All this arsing around with metaphors and the like is clearly unnecessary, especially when it would be far easier to replace the word monkey with, say, computer: “a computer printing random letters for an infinite amount of time will almost surely type a given text, such as the complete works of William Shakespeare.”
Wiki does have something interesting to offer about the theory, though:
In 2003, lecturers and students from the University of Plymouth MediaLab Arts course used a £2,000 grant from the Arts Council to study the literary output of real monkeys. They left a computer keyboard in the enclosure of six Celebes Crested Macaques in Paignton Zoo in Devon in England for a month, with a radio link to broadcast the results on a website.
Not only did the monkeys produce nothing but five pages consisting largely of the letter S, the lead male began by bashing the keyboard with a stone, and the monkeys continued by urinating and defecating on it.
That’s all very interesting and highly amusing, but back to the subject matter. And I have to say how pleased I am to finally use this image to the left. I’ve had it stored away for an age, waiting for the right blog entry to come up for its inclusion. I suppose I could mention that just this very month researchers in the UK claim that playing Tetris helps to reduce the effects of traumatic stress.
I know I’m about to anger all the researchers around the world who regularly visit my blog, but I think research is a load of bollocks. Research misses, misinterprets or falsifies results to the point of being harmful. Regardless any altruistic intentions of research there are miriad factors that influence or pervert the original test settings or results, making the the whole thing relatively worthless.
Statistics are a load of shite, too. Pick up any paper or magazine and there are a load of them just waiting to grab our attention. Of course, the only stats that are worth reading are the ones that pamper to our political or ethical standpoint. A discussion or argument waits with baited breath for them, as if their presentation somehow validates or even strengthens the participators’ ramblings.