Of Exponents and End Projects

I’ve always thought that the “Library of Babel” reading we did was interesting. So I got to thinking, what if we used technology (which is supposed to be the focus of this class, after all) to bring that impossible place to life in some way? Then I got to thinking about Twitter – what if every single possible Twitter post were available somewhere? What if Twitter were effectively “solved”? What would that mean for future Twitterers, knowing that their next Tweet (and, indeed, every Tweet they would ever try to make, however original), were already found in some room of a virtual library?

Granted, much of what would be found in said library would be noise, but the same is often said of Twitter.

How many Tweets would there be in this library? By my estimate, about 100 to the 140th power, or 10 to the 280th power (that’s a 1 with 280 zeroes). Granted, there’s not enough hard drive space in the world to hold that many Tweets (the observable universe only has at most 10 to the 82nd atoms, which is a lot less), which is a significant part of what makes the project so interesting to me (it’s fun to do the impossible!).

I’m thinking this would be in the format of a simple point-and-click adventure game like the maze part of Inanimate Alice, i.e., click on a book to read it, click on a doorway to enter the adjoining room of the library, etc.

-Dave Turka


~ by kartud on March 27, 2011.

%d bloggers like this: