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- Mall aboard: Future requires evolution at West Park Mall (3/24/17)23
- Legal discrimination complaint, ethics complaint filed in Scott City government (3/22/17)13
- Business notebook: Cape native goes from farm to mobile-food operation (3/20/17)1
- Former Southeast softball coach sues Board of Regents; seeks damages and her job back (3/23/17)15
- Former Scott City administrator: 'I was forced to resign' (3/21/17)6
- Triplett manslaughter case set for July 2018 (3/21/17)2
- Two people found dead in Advance house fire (3/21/17)
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- Two local lawmakers back charter school bill; Perryville lawmaker objects to measure (3/19/17)24
Typing monkeys make real mess, no Shakespeare
LONDON -- Give an infinite number of monkeys an infinite number of typewriters, the theory goes, and they will eventually produce the prose the likes of Shakespeare.
Give six monkeys one computer for a month, and they will make a mess.
Researchers at Plymouth University in England reported this week that primates left alone with a computer attacked the machine and failed to produce a single word.
"They pressed a lot of S's," researcher Mike Phillips said Friday. "Obviously, English isn't their first language."
A group of faculty and students in the university's media program left a computer in the monkey enclosure at Paignton Zoo in England, home to six Sulawesi crested macaques.
At first, said Phillips, "the lead male got a stone and started bashing the hell out of it. Another thing they were interested in was in defecating and urinating all over the keyboard."
The notion that monkeys typing at random will eventually produce literature is often attributed to Thomas Huxley, a 19th-century scientist. Mathematicians have also used it to illustrate concepts of chance.