When quantum computing gurus discovered the theory of performing infinite calculations in a single operation, they promised the public everything from nanobots to immortality. A quirk in quantum theory would let us trick reality itself.
But the theory failed in practice. They rechecked the math and it looked fine, but the live computations repeatedly produced garbage output.
Years later, a meta-study revealed something strange in the outputs. The chronologically concatenated results produced a string of 169 repeating bits. It seemed nonsensical until a programmer arranged the sequence in a 13 square grid—to see a perfectly formed angry face emoji.