Wednesday, November 24, 2004

If Monkeys be the Doodad of Blogs, Type On!

Thanks to Brian Weatherson for this sweet monkey stuff. Best record submitted by my collective monkeys so far is 20 letters from The Merry Wives of Windsor. But what is the chance for first 2000-letter-page of any of the 37 Shakespearean plays to actually show up in any given second? Allow me to try to figure it out.

Since there are 80 typewriter keys and each page requires 2000 keystrokes, there will be 802000 possible different pages, only 37 of which will be Shakespearean first pages.

Since a monkeysecond is 86,400 times faster than ours, and since a monkey needs 2000 monkeyseconds to complete a page (at the rate of 1 typewriter key per 1 monkeysecond), then a monkey produces: 86,400/2000 = 43.2 pages per human second.

And since there are currently 8 x 1032 monkeys typing simultaneously, the number of pages typed by those monkeys for every human second will be: 43.2 x 8 x 1032 = 3.46 x 1034 pages.

So presently, the chance of hitting a Shakespearean first page in a given human second will therefore be: 37 x 3.46 x 1034 in 802000 or 1.28 x 1036 in 802000 or about 1 in 103800; that is:

ONE in the number 1 FOLLOWED BY 3800 ZEROES! (Am I right? Please check my math, anyone?)

I think it is safe to say we will get a Shakespearean first page NOT in a million years, literally. Fxs

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