This Week on Mystery Theatre:
Cracking the Code

March 6th, 2023
Category: Uncategorized

The irregular tapping came from the other side of the sheet-metal wall that separated Paul’s and Harold’s cell from the totally enclosed tank for desperados next door.

Experimentally, Paul tapped on his side.

“Twenty-three—eight-fifteen,” came the reply. Paul recognized the schoolboy’s code: one for A, two for B … twenty-three—eight-fifteen” was “Who?”

That’s a rudimentary version of tap code (also known as knock code) depicted in Kurt Vonnegut’s Player Piano, a novel that a recent report on NPR called prescient in its anticipation of “the current state of AI and automation.” You’ll find it on page 306 of the Dial Press Trade Paperback edition, and it’s just one of a number of literary accounts of a code system introduced in this week’s installment … [read more at The 21st-Century Scop].

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