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  • "He passed me a sealed jam jar, the contents of which were half rice and half lentils.

    'I'm not hungry, thanks,' I told him.

    'No, no. I call this device an entroposcope. Shake it for me.'

    I shook the jam jar and the rice and lentils settled together in that sort of random clumping way that chance dictates.

    'So?' I asked.

    'Entirely usual,' replied Mycroft. 'Standard clumping, entropy levels normal. Shake it every now and then. You'll know when a decrease in entropy occurs as the rice and lentils will separate into more ordered patterns - and that's the time to watch out for ludicrously unlikely coincidences.'"

    - Jasper Fforde, 'Lost In A Good Book'.

    November 24, 2008