A Faithful Catalog

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  • #6255 Reply

    Chad Parry

    I wrote an essay on some of the mathematics behind the Library of Babel: The Infinite Library. We can use number theory to learn some things about how the Library would need to be organized, (although disorganized would also be a good word for it). Originally I set out to prove that the pseudorandom nature of this website was an “incorrect” implementation. I ended up proving that the choice was justified.

    #7625 Reply

    Simon Chadwick

    Ah, very good. I was thinking for a long time that the pseudo-random ordering was somewhat arbitrary as well.

    Accepting the limits on repetition and book length, there is a finite number of books in the library. But why catalogue them randomly?

    I had a notion to visit the same library but with all of the books rebound and then reshelved in strictly alphabetical order. The hex name would simply be the almost-full text of the first page of the first book.

    This new library simply has different psychological games going on. Instead of the hope that you might find something profound, there would be the grinding obviousness that you never will, unless you know what you are looking for.

    #15419 Reply


    +1, an alphabetized library would immeadiately show its absolute hopelessness.

    #15420 Reply


    I mean alphabetically ordered library.

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