A New Method for Searching for Books

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This topic contains 6 replies, has 1 voice, and was last updated by  messiah 4 weeks ago.

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  • #12652 Reply


    What if we had a method for searching for books in a manner such as the following:
    What if we could actually search for books that are short in length? Considering the fact that the space character (spacebar) is an actual character in used for searching, is it possible for us or for you, Jonathan, to create a way for us to search for books that are, compared to a full length 410 page book, extremely short? Meaning maybe there is some way we could perform a search that would consist of for example, only 80 characters and of course the remainder of the page and book would only contain spaces. So then, if we are able to locate books that are made up of these extremely short texts, we might have a better chance of finding at least relatively coherent texts. I realize this is not much different then us easily finding a text that we are searching for, but since when we search for a text, it is never in the beginning of the first page. I think it was be very interesting if we could search for texts that appear at the very beginning of a first page of a book and of course filter the rest out to be spaces.

    #12654 Reply


    A couple more options I have thought of.
    The ability to search for a title and text string in the same book.
    Or the ability to enter in a certain number of random English words to appear continuously.
    Like this in English terms: “Enter Random String” and then a text field after it for entering the number of words that you want to locate.
    Or possibly the ability to search more than 1 string for multiple pages of a book.
    Like a prompt button asking us if we would like to search another text string that would appear on an additional page of the same book. These are just ideas but I think there’s a lesson we can learn from the library.
    What I get out of it aside from fascination, is that everything from the past, present, and the future is already out there. I don’t think we will ever be able to just conjure up some hidden secret biography of the universe or some guidelines on achieving perfection in any way. Finding an unknown, completely coherent, logical book of 410 pages would be like hitting the state lottery jackpot, a million times, consecutively, or worse. A computer doesn’t have the intelligence or the creativity to bring us what we are looking for based on some general idea. Even if we could randomly locate a series of coherent texts that we might think of as some kind of universal knowledge, it has the same chance of being a complete falsehood. The library contains a text stating that the universe doesn’t exist and that consciousness itself doesn’t exist. But, we know the two statements are completely false based on our definitions. Maybe they are true based on some other definitions that we can just create. What’s right or wrong, true or false, is not universally definite. It’s for us to decide as a person and as a society. What’s in the Library of Babel, that’s for us to decide too because nothing you want to see or find in the library is going to jump out at you and say, “Hey! I know you were not looking for me but here I am anyway!” You will only find exactly what you search for. Finding any real coherent book or even close is like trying to spot an atom in the whole universe.

    #12740 Reply


    using a self-teaching/self-learning artifical quasiintelligence (please note it already exists, if u want details then don’t be a cuck and feel free to ask me for links & explanation) the automatic sorting out of coherent texts is completely doable – in theory. however, we are talking about such a dickload of data to be examined that there is no supercomputer imaginable for any human being that would hit at least one book (that bears at least a minimal interesting shit) in a billion of years.

    also, your 80 character idea is mathematically completely sound, since 29^80 is still less than 29^3200, but friggin’ huge to handle, nonetheless.

    #13114 Reply


    The issue I think is that, while every page is possible, not every book is. Because of this, it may be extremely unlikely that any suggested search would ever succeed. I don’t know the chances exactly though.

    #13132 Reply


    >while every page is possible, not every book is

    u herd it wrong m8. the foundation of this library is exactly the fact that every crackin’ book exists within the prearranged length of tha books.

    #13147 Reply


    Unfortunately, messiah, this interpretation of the Library generates all the pages independently of each other. The reason hex names are usually ~3200 characters is because that’s the number you need to store one copy of every possible page.

    A true version of the Library, with all of the possible books, would be much more awesome.

    #13148 Reply


    I question your insight dear para-potatoes. the address space is huge in this library: alphaNUMERIC hexagon addresses, walls, shelves, and books on them. I’m not calculating at the moment the entropy relationship between a book and the address representation of the book, but I suspect the latter is bigger.

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