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The answer to Life, The Universe and Everything is 42 ... but why 42?

Section
Nights with Rick Morin,
Publish Date
Wednesday, 4 July 2018, 3:37PM

In Douglas Adams’ classic novel ‘The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy’, the supercomputer ‘Deep Thought’ is built by a race of super-intelligent aliens to determine the answer to “life, the universe and everything.”

Somewhat anticlimactically, the computer determines that the answer is “42.”

It sounds like a joke, but check this out: Adams was definitely a computer guy, and was into computer code and programming. In programming, an asterisk is commonly used to mean “Whatever you want it to be.”

In ASCII language, the most basic computer software, ‘42′ is the designation for an asterisk. So, when Deep Thought was asked what the true meaning of life was, it answered as you might think a computer would - 42,  in other words, “Anything you want it to be!”
 

 

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