If you had infinite monkeys with typewriters...

… what would you use them for? Getting the works of Shakespeare is, of course, a waste of them since you can just go to the corner bookstore and get them.

Getting the LOST works of Shakespeare shouldn’t work either since you wouldn’t know if they were the real thing or just some other random text.

Ditto for all fact finding, from meatloaf recipes to racetrack results or cancer cures. You just have no way of knowing if you are looking at the real thing.

Would there be any practical use for them? I mean, sure, great conversation piece for your next cocktail party but how about something you could get a buck from?

Assume you have the appropriate search tools and are not stuck forever in a Borges library setting trying to find something amidst mountains of random scribble.

Well I think Vern Troyer would have to be involved.

I had a thought the other day that is either really profound or really shallow. The infinite monkeys and infinite typewriters and infinite time thing…

hasn’t it happened already? I mean, here we are. And look! There’s some Shakespeare.

Poor monkeys. I’d upgrade them to at least an Apple II c.

Then I’d hook them up with some Frogger and let them go bananas.

The problem isn’t the random scribble – it’s the stuff that loks reasonable until you get to something that looks good but isn’t. Like the recipe for meatloaf that calls for 2 pounds of lean ground meat, one egg, one chopped onion, one can of tomato paste, and a gallon of paint thinner.
Just because you can type it doesn’t mean that it’s true.

Exactly, that is the basic premise of my OP. Factual answers of any kind are out of the question for this reason.


Monkey fights. I wouldn’t let them use the typewriters as weapons though (too dangerous). Maybe they could keep score, or I could use them to put out a Monkey Fight Monthly newsletter.

If you had some way to find coherent (as opposed to random gobbledydock) texts you could read them as original works, the trouble would be finding good ones.
For example buried in the infinite amount of books written there may be a better fantasy novel than all published until now (except for LOTR of course, there can be none better), trouble is, how do you find it?

The first thing I’d do is hire someone to clean up all the apeshit.

At minimum, infinite monkeys + infinite typewriters = infinite energy. Hook up a few million of those typewriters to a generator and rule the global electricity market.

Also, infinite monkey- and typewriter-derived resources. Lean, savory monkey meat! Organs and tissues for medical experimentation! What kind of typewriters are these? Underwoods? Selectric? An unlimited supply of refined metals! If each typewriter has only one sheet of paper, that’s infinite paper! You can take as many as you want, and it doesn’t matter! Because they’re infinite!

Also, monkey poo is excellent fertilizer. You would be the greatest poo magnate of all time.

I think you may be taking the op’s premise a little too literally…

Maybe you could train some of the other monkeys to do it?

We’re the Monkeys!


Frodo, I thought that original works of literature would be the only reasonable use for this. You could ask for haikus about red helicopters with sardines that don’t mention donkeys or flashlights, and choose from those.

Longer works might be harder. Maybe if your search device could somehow screen for internal coherence, grammar , absurd ideas and all that…

Any way you slice it, in the end it would have to come down to the search engine somehow bringing it down to a finite (and preferably small) set of results for you to peruse and choose. Still, probably better and faster than paying writers.

No shit!. And no paper or meat either.

Yeah I thought of all these. And then I thought of the potential for harassment of infinite monkeys on someone’s back or simply all screaming.

So let’s change it to having the text output of all the monkeys, as opposed to the monkeys themselves. :wink:

And people say we monkey around,
But we’re too busy singin’
To put anybody down.

Yes, monkeys would sell for a tidy price to medical labs. Typrewriters would make for scrap metal.

They would become my personal army of typewriter wielding monkey soldiers. And since I have been given an infinite supply, the world would soon be mine. (Sorry Skald)

But somewhere in their infinite output is a way to power a fusion reactor on ape shit. Find that text and you’re golden!

I had this actually.
Unfortunatly one of the monkeys wrote out the killing joke, in monkey, and they all died.