Monkeys at programming

Here’s an amusing one. Virtual monkeys actually succeeding in typing the Works of Shakespeare. The monkeys type out nine letter sequences which are then ticked off if they match any sequence in Shakespeare.

As mathematician Dr Ian Steward points out in the article, the methodology is a little flawed. But it doesn’t take a mathematician to see that you could do the work in no time by using one letter sequences, or “point mutations” as they are called in biology.

The programmer says, “This project is my attempt to find a creative way to attain an answer without infinite resources.” You might conclude that he has more resources available than he’s putting to good use. But he’s only having fun. And getting a bit of publicity. Nobody really thinks random events and selection could produce something as complicated as a book.

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About Jon Garvey

Training in medicine (which was my career), social psychology and theology. Interests in most things, but especially the science-faith interface. The rest of my time, though, is spent writing, playing and recording music.
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