April 21, 2013

OD'ing on the Boston Marathon coverage

Big events drive me underground. I find it painful to watch our country's chicken-without-a-head media do its thing. Better to slip under and resurface later on. I peeked out today to see what's up. Sigh. Same thing.

Luckily, I can write fiction to keep me occupied. Dang, but it's a great hobby. You can even do it in prison! As long as you can get your hands on paper and a pen, you're good to go.

This week I've been working on a new short story. (Still haven't gone back to writing the novel; soon, very soon.) The focus of the new story is the hive mind. It's an impressive structure, even if we can't see it or understand it.

There was a short-lived series on the Science Channel that featured mathematics. One of the things they focused on was the hive mind. They asked a couple of hundred people (I'm not sure how many; a big bunch) how many beans there were in a jar, and recorded all their answers. When they totaled all the answers and averaged them, the result was something like ten beans away from the correct answer.

There's something there, something awesomely powerful that can do things our individual minds can't. It's the hive mind. Well, I've come up with a great story idea based on this concept. And writing that story is how I've survived this bombing episode.

How did you get through the week?


cm said...

That beans in the jar thing is very interesting.

writenow said...

Even the mathematician was shocked. There were about 5000 beans in that jar So missing the right number by 10… Is amazing. Hi cm!