Friday January 22nd, 2010

The exercise:

Your four line prose prompt for this fine Friday: calculations.

AFC Word Count: 23,866
AFC Word Target: 22,000


"... and so, with my innovative calculations, the world food crisis will be solved," Doctor Munroe finished to a standing ovation.

"Ah, excuse me," my colleague called out as he stood up beside me and waited for the commotion to subside. "Sorry to be a bother, but it seems to me that in line two hundred and twelve you forgot to carry the three - thereby making the remaining eight hundred and fifty-two lines of calculations invalid."

"Bobby," I sighed as he sat back down amidst the stunned silence of the other conference attendees, "this is why nobody likes you."


Greg said...

Hehe, that amused me a lot :) Speaking as a mathematician, the usual problems we have with long calculations are forgetting that the product of two negative numbers is a positive (i.e. -(x-3) turns into -x-3 instead of -x+3) and making transcription errors from one line to the next, just like in your story.
Poor Dr. Munroe.


"You are gay," announced the holographic head. Its golden, glowing, vaguely alien form was the most interaction most people ever had with Earth Intelligence, the vastly superior computer that ran the world.
"But I've got a girlfriend!" said Dr. Munroe, his face going pale with shock.
"My calculations show that someone who forgets to carry the three should not be allowed to reproduce, so I have made arrangements," said Earth Intelligence, its inhuman face somehow contriving to smirk.

Marc said...

Haha, for some reason I was not expecting a continuation. Made that all the better.

Love the last line :)