Pynchon thinks the internet is “RANDOM”

All goes well till the night of September 10th, when suddenly these numbers coming out of Princeton began to depart from randomness, I mean really abruptly, drastically, no explanation. You can look it up, the graphs are posted on their Web site for anybody to see, it’s …..I’d say scary if I knew what any of it meant. It kept on that way through the 11th and a few days after. Then just as mysteriously everything went back to near-perfect random again.” (Pynchon, Bleeding Edge, Page #341-342)

The moment comes from the conversation between Maxine and Justin. As Pynchon states in the previous texts, the DeepArcher program which is created by Justin and Lucas has lots of secrets in it. Everyone can log into this program and hides secrets inside anonymously. In order to make the DeepArcher program untraceable, each number in the DeepArcher Program is random. However, Justin pointed out that all the random numbers in the DeepArcher program began to lose control, or based as What Justin said “began to depart from randomness” on the evening of September 10th. This situation lasts several days. However, all the numbers go back to randomness after these days. Pynchon points out randomness is very important and significant here. When all the random numbers disappear in the DeepArcher Program, the attack of “911” happens. When there are less random numbers, something is very likely to happen.

In the Chapter 5, “The first thing that jumps out of bushes, waggling its dick so to speak, is a Benford’s law anomaly in some of the expenses.” (Pynchon, Page#41). Pynchon mentioned Benford’s law to interpret that all the numbers should be in orders somehow. Numbers may seem completely random, but when we put the numbers into the Benford’s curve, all the numbers should fulfill in this model. Or else, there is some trouble in it. In the Chapter5, Maxine finds that the numbers in the receipts of hashslingrz did not fulfill the Benford’s curve at all. Thus, there must exist some financial problems in company hashslingrz. Pynchon points out the numbers should be predictable random here. Pynchon emphasizes the importance of existing of random numbers in the internet through the whole novel.

However, based on the ideas from the book <Protocol> which is written by Galloway, protocol contains DNS (Domain Name System) and TCP (Transmission Control Protocol)/IP. DNS is decentralized structure and TCP/IP is distributed structure. Both of them has structures. In other words, everything in the internet should have structures and have orders. In a word, there cannot be any randomness exists in the internet. We know <Protocol> is a logical and scientific book. Galloway introduces the internet in the first chapter, and this must be true that the internet has orders and they are not random.

In contrast, at the both Page#41 and Page#341,342, Pynchon keeps saying the numbers in internet should not be completely random, and they should be predictable random. In addition, Pynchon refers the people in the internet is not random. The numbers and data represent the people’s minds and thinking. People are connected with each other in the internet by predictable random numbers. When some big events or disasters happens in the world, the predictable random numbers will depart from random several hours before the happening of the events or disasters to predict that. There is an experiment taken by Princeton. “Princeton, as a matter of fact. These folks maintain a network of thirty to forty random-event generations…. On the theory that if our minds really are all linked together somehow, any major global event, disaster, whatever, will show up in the numbers.” (Pynchon, Page#341). In the experiment, Princeton selected different data world widely from thirty-forty random-event generators. Pynchon believes each person are connected with each other by these predictable numbers. Pynchon uses the slide “Global Consciousness Project” to interpret this.

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