Tossing a bitcoin

I’ve just taken delivery of my first physical bitcoin.  I hadn’t realised it was topologically single-sided: you think of more complex shapes like the Möbius Strip or Klein Bottle as being interesting, but seeing it in this simply-connected coin came as a surprise to me.

Tom Stoppard was ahead of his time.  Rosencrantz and Guildenstern didn’t need an Infinite Improbability Drive to toss 92 consecutive Heads (or whatever it was): it was a single-sided bitcoin, and every toss is heads.  Impressive to have written about that 50 years ago.

And so much for all the hype around the new British pound coin!

 


 

Enough of that.  The genre of April 1st jokes has gone distinctly stale in our times, as the mass of weak and contrived stories fail to fool anyone.  Especially online, where most readers of anything I write will be seeing it outside today’s time window.  Even those who get it by live feed or aggregator.

This morning in my feed I saw a particularly feeble line in my El Reg feed.  Reg now behind invisible bitcoin paywall.  They’re now running bitcoin-mining Javascript in readers’ browsers.  I clicked it over breakfast, because I thought it might have collected some amusing comments.  The comments failed to amuse, but they lead on to an audacious and imaginative joke, for which kudos to El Reg even if it’s not entirely intentional.

Every comment bears the grinning troll icon!

This is clearly just for today or this morning, depending on how they interpret the tradition (maybe it’s really elaborate, and sniffs your timezone for a best guess of when to display them)?  But the ingenious thing is that this applies not just to the feeble joke article, but every article, through the history of El Reg.  Suddenly the Reg every day is April 1st tradition really comes into its own, as tall stories like yesterday’s one about World Backup Day display all grinning trolls.

And suddenly the seeds of doubt are sown over all the serious stories.  This is surreal, and turns it into a brilliant new twist on an old tradition!

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Posted on April 1, 2017, in humour, tradition. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. I got a good laugh out of the Reg bitcoin story. It struck me as a really nifty idea in itself. I mean, I assume it’s ridiculous, but I couldn’t confidently say *why*.

    But sadly I missed the troll icons, ‘cuz I didn’t visit the site on Saturday.

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