Sunday, November 05, 2006

THE Answer

As has already been established by a very "reputable" source, the answer to life, the universe, and everything is....
42

Now, based on what you have experienced and what you know (and your interpretation of the answer), what is the question?

11 comments:

Sara Chisesi said...

Ok another post by Winston, since he can't log on (but first- what are you talking about?????)

Ok here's Winston's take on it:
Given that
6 = life
and that
the binary function "x" or "multiplication" is the universe
And that
9 = and everything

What is 6 x 9?

lasanya said...

what is the meaning of life of course

Smaile said...

I think "Where's Waldo?" is pretty much the question being asked here

On the other hand, it's really funny that I've heard multiple people say that the answer to everything is 42. Most people are probably just copying what others have said, but unless there is some basis for saying that, there's got to be some kind of reason for someone having said that in the first place! It was probably just to be funny, and i read too far into it, but oh well.

Sam I Am said...

I thought 42 was the incorrect answer given by the computer in -Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy-. The correct answer was to be computed by the supercomputer "Humanity."

I think everyone is familiar with this interpretation, but the fact that 42 is incorrect points to several things about the nature of the ultimate question and the ultimate answer. Since the stark definiteness of the answer doesn't help me sleep at night, it shows that the very nature of trying to answer these overarching questions is useless. The word "answer" implies something conclusive, but it is inevitable that there will be those that disagree with this capital "T" truth. Since the answer has no justification behind it, it is unsatisfactory. I mean, what would happen if a supreme being just handed you a fortune cookie containing capital "T", and it turned out to either be something completely wrong, or something completely retarded (like 42)? I'd just eat the cookie.

But after that, I would refute that answer with my personal list of justifications, logic, emotion, past experiences, ad infinitum. If that fortune cookie did tell me something true such as "You are a charmer" I would know it to be true. Why? Because I have justifications for that conclusion. Therefore, no capital "T" exists and if it does, we as humans that seek justifications would not accept it unless it fits with our little "t".

Sam I Am said...

BTW, this is why I think faith is not a justification for knowledge. If faith was sufficient by itself, then no one would have any problem believing "42" is in fact the answer. In fact, we would believe that is the answer so much that we wouldn't even care that there wasn't any question. But "faith" is only the term we assign when we want to believe something but we don't have any justification for it or we're too lazy to find those justifications. For example, the religious usually have some form of justification beyond "faith" such as sense perception, personal experience, etc. that are real justifications. I think (and I'm sorry if I'm wrong) that to point to "faith" as the reason someone believes in God is immoral because that assumes that they don't have enough real justifications or that their logic/SP/etc. is somehow flawed.

RKadlec said...

7 x 6 = 42. :-)

IBTromboneGirl_42 said...

When there is general confusion with the mice and they say that "why" doesn't work because the answer doesn't make sense but I don't think it has to make sense. Maybe the question is "what is the ultimate question" or something like like (why 42?) For us to really understand the answer we have to have some level of knowledge about the question - and thus understand it a bit. I think the point at any rate is to make people think, maybe there actually is not a question

devin said...

Okay - you're ALL looking at this the wrong way. First, 42 has more relevance to life, the universe, and everything than any of you think. Secondly, let me rephrase the question:
Using an interesting reference to a good book, "What is the role of chance in our everyday existence? How many coincidences are, in fact, not coincidences? Using the simple number "42", taken from Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, try to find ways in which those two digits have impacted your life, even in the smallest of ways. I am positive there will be more of these "coincedences" than you think."

THIS is what I thought people would get from the original post, but apparently I was very wrong. I apologize for the misconception.

A. Koss said...

http://www.47.net/47society/

Uh oh, what now?

Because this is the ToK blog, I suppose I have to put something deep and meaningful in this post as well.
Things like "the answer is 42" and the 47 society show that people have an instinctive drive to make order out of chaos. Often people will see patterns in things that are truly random. This could definitely be a problem of knowledge in the area of math. What if there really isn't an underlying mathematical structure to everything? Is it possible that we've got the completely wrong view of the universe because of our human need for order and patterns? How's that for deepness?

devin said...

But what if there is?

A. Koss said...

Then how can we distinguish the true pattern from the patterns we see because we want them to be there?