This question is from Gullivers travel - Gulliver visits the Academy of Lagado. He meets an inventor who is working on a project to extract sunbeams out of cucumbers in order to supply the Governor's gardens. He thinks he may have some success in eight years' time. He begs Gulliver to give him money because cucumbers are expensive. Gulliver has been supplied with money for the purpose by Munodi, who is familiar with the academicians' habit of begging.
Another inventor is working on ways of reverse-engineering excrement into food. Another is trying to find a way of making spiders weave fabric of different colors by feeding them colored flies; yet another, a physician, tries to cure patients by blowing air up the anus. While Gulliver watches, he tries the technique on a dog, which dies.
A professor is trying to teach his students to improve knowledge using a machine that rearranges words. He speculates that new books could be written in this way on many subjects without the need for intelligence or study. He intends to give the world a new body of arts and sciences, but believes the public should fund the project.