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<   No. 606   2004-09-23   >

Comic #606

1 Spanners: I've installed a revolutionary new computer system.
2 Spanners: It solves problems by a populist program of grassroots political activism, building support until the answer overthrows the establishment.
3 Iki Piki: Can you explain that in simpler terms?
4 Spanners: You know how most computers calculate in powers of two? This one uses the Power of One.

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The Power of One is a novel by Australian author Bryce Courtney. It was made into a movie about... well... about a populist program of grassroots political activism in South Africa.

Unfortunately, as I learnt after I made this comic, the movie is only loosely based on the premise of the book. In fact, the movie is based mostly on the title of the book. Oh, a few characters have names in common, but the film makers basically adapted it to a different story.


2013-10-05 Rerun commentary: Calculating in powers of one is in fact possible. Even though all powers of one are... one. So all you have are ones. You are then using a unary number system rather than the more usual binary number system of computers. Computers could certainly do it; it would just be significantly less memory efficient.

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