Dirk Gently's I-Ching Calculator

This I-Ching calculator is based on that Dirk Gently uses in the book 'The Long Dark Tea-time of the Soul', by Douglas Adams. Apologies to him if it wasn't quite what he was thinking of, but this is my interpretation anyway.

'The electronic I Ching calculator was badly made. It had probably been manufactured in whichever of the South-East Asian countries was busy tooling up to do to South Korea what South Korea was busy doing to Japan. Glue technology had obviously not progressed in that country to the point where things could be successfully held together with it. Already the back had half fallen off and needed to be stuck back on with Sellotape.'

'It was much like an ordinary pocket calculator, except that the LCD screen was a little larger than usual, in order to accommodate the abridged judgments of King Wen on each of the sixty-four hexagrams, and also the commentaries of his son, the Duke of Chou, on each of the lines of the hexagram. These were unusual texts to see marching across the display of a pocket calculator, particularly as they had been translated from the Chinese via the Japanese and seemed to have enjoyed many adventures on the way.'

'The device also functioned as an ordinary calculator, but only to a limited degree. It could handle any calculation which returned an answer of anything up to "4".'

'"1 + 1" it could manage ("2"), and "1 + 2" ("3") and "2 + 2" ("4") or "tan 74" ("3.4874145"), but anything above "4" it represented merely as "A Suffusion of Yellow". Dirk was not certain if this was a programming error or an insight beyond his ability to fathom, but he was crazy about it anyway, enough to hand over £20 of ready cash for the thing.'

First click on the link to Open the Calculator in a new browser window (you'll need a frames capable browser with Javascript enabled). It will (probably...) work like any normal calculator. If you would like help with a question then follow the short list of instructions below. If you encounter a problem then please let me know: froody_web@thateden.co.uk.


1. Concentrate soulfully on the question which is beseiging you.
2. Write It Down.
3. Ponder It.
4. Enjoy the Silence.
5. Achieve Inner Harmony and Tranquility.
6. Push the Red Button.