The "infinite monkey theorem" is a popular misnomer for an idea from Émile
Borel's book on probability, published in 1909. The book introduced the
concept of "dactylographic monkeys" seated in front of typewriter keyboards
and hitting keys at random. Borel exemplified a proposition in the theory of
probability called Kolmogorov's zero-one law by saying that the probability
is one that such a monkey will eventually type every book in France's
Bibliothèque nationale de France (National Library). There need not be
infinitely many monkeys; a single monkey who executes infinitely many
keystrokes suffices. Subsequent restatements by other people have replaced
the National Library not only with the British Museum but also with the
Library of Congress; a popular retelling says that the monkeys would
eventually type out the collected works of William Shakespeare.
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Today's selected anniversaries:
1517 - Martin Luther nailed his 95 Theses onto the door of a church in
Wittenberg, Germany, marking the beginning of the Protestant Reformation.
1863 - The Maori Wars resumed as British forces in New Zealand led by
General Duncan Cameron began their Invasion of the Waikato along the Waikato
1922 - Benito Mussolini became the youngest Premier in the history of
Italy at age 39.
1941 - Gutzon Borglum and 400 workers completed the colossal busts of
U.S. Presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt, and
Abraham Lincoln at Mount Rushmore.
1984 - Prime Minister Indira Gandhi of India was assassinated by two of
her own bodyguards. Riots soon broke out in New Delhi.
Wikiquote of the day:
("It's always worthwhile to make others aware of their worth.") ~Malcolm