On Infinite Monkeys and Shakespeare

The infinite monkey theorem is the idea that, given an infinite amount of monkeys, typewriters, paper and time, those monkeys will eventually the entire works of Shakespeare or any given text. The infinite monkey theorem stems from the ideas that given infinite time even nearly impossible events become almost certain and that an infinite string of information will contain an extremely improbable sub-string such as Hamlet, the King James Bible or a portion of pi. Finally, in 2003 University of Plymouth researchers used a £2,000 grant to put the infinite monkey theorem to the test. Using six macaques, a computer keyboard and a radio transmitter to obtain the results. The results after the one month test? No Shakespeare. The monkeys produces five pages containing little more than the letter ‘S’ and the keyboard was made filthy from being used as a receptacle for biological waste by said monkeys, but they taught the researchers that monkeys are not random string generators. Actually, macaques rather like the letter ‘S’.


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