May 18th, 2012


(no subject)

A friend was asking about my new eBook reader device, and I went on and on till her eyes glazed over.  I was going to send her an email with the rest of my eye-glaze, but decided I might want to send it to more than one person.  Then I was thinking of putting it onto my website, but that's a pain.  Musings should be published in my journal, so it makes the most sense to put it here.

In the beginning was the word and...  OK, we'll skip that generation.

Generation #0 of books - page
  • Size: 1 page
  • Medium:  Clay tablet or woven papyrus or strips of bamboo tied together or scraped sheepskin (vellum) or wax-coated wood.
  • Copying: Always hard (handwritten)
  • Date:  4000 BC to 500 BC
First generation of books - Scroll
  • Size:  up to 30 pages, maybe 50
  • Medium: Vellum?  Early paper?  Woven papyrus?  Silk?  Rolled for storage, and current section unrolled to read
  • Copying: Always hard (handwritten)
  • Date: 500 BC to 1200 AD?
  • Example:  Each "book" of the bible.  We think of "the book" as the whole bible, but that era thought of each scroll as a book.
Second generation of books --- Codex (official name for edge-bound book as we think of a "book")
  • 30 to 4000 pages
  • Medium: usually paper.  (mashed wood or linen, "screened" dry and "sized" with clay or starch to make it smoother.)
  • Copying:  Before Gutenberg, hard.  After Gutenberg, easy at time of printing, hard later.
Current generation of books -- Library.  People own a collection of books, in ever-easier to carry formats
  • a few to very many books
  • Medium:  flash RAM in e-readers; flash ram in smartphones; "cloud" storage in dropbox or publisher or elsewhere.
  • Copying:  trivial.  Indeed for "cloud" storage, copying becomes almost irrelevant.
Livejournal offered to let me continue writing this post when I went to make today's post.  I can't remember when I wrote it, but it talks about my "new" e-reader which I got early for my birthday in March of 2011. It was aimed at one of my tutoring students, so it couldn't have been after mid-April.  Does LJ keep saved draft postings forever?

Dum & Dee status 1

I was going to post a status update to the Tweedle twins, but realized that I never put up the first post here.  For someone who claims journals make more sense than facebook, I should pummel myself.  Anyhow, here is the first post again.

Tweedle Dum - 9 month maleTweedle Dee - 9 month female

I don't know how long they keep this page up.
21 years ago, after we broke up, Moria (then named Patricia) gave me a
cat for my birthday so I wouldn't be lonely.  That cat made it until
late in 2010.
So this year, she has given me two cats for my birthday.  Is this a
hint that we're about to break up?
Is it abuse to call the boycat "Dum"?  That's the name that the rescue
foster gave him.  Well, sort'a.
In the pictures, the pink nose is on the boy, and the black nose is on
the girl.  
The boy hasn't left the carry box yet.  The girl is off exploring
somewhere -- I didn't see her leave, and don't know where she is.  I'm
going to let them find me on their own time.
I used to own a mind like a steel trap.
Perhaps if I'd specified a brass one, it
wouldn't have rusted like this.

Dum & Dee status 2

OK, the Tweedle twins arrived on Tuesday evening.  I left them in the cat carrier in the bathroom, with food, running water (filtered cat "fountain), and a litter box with them.  At some point, Dee (the girlcat) moved to behind the toilet, and Dum scrunched under the blanket in the carrier.  About four hours later, I pulled Dum from the carrier, attempted to cuddle him a bit, then let him loose again. He ended up behind the bathroom door, squeezed in with Dee behind the toilet, and behind the shower curtain in the tub.

On Wednesday, I tried pulling each of them out, showed them the sunny place in "their" bedroom, and tried to cuddle them again.  Dee ended up behind the desk, and Dum behind the closet door.

On Wednesday about noon, I attempted a bit of cuddle time with Dum, and he was clearly reluctant.  I put him into the hallway to see whether he would choose the bathroom or the cat-room.  Neither -- he headed downstairs.  I don't know if he ended up under something in the living room, or in the basement.  Probably the basement.  Moria says that her cat is very twitchy near the TV area in the basement.

No sign of Dum since Wednesday.

Late Thursday evening, I could hear Dee meowing quietly.  I pulled her from behind the toilet and attempted some cuddle time.  On the way to my bedroom, I tripped.  She ended up landing cleanly on the bed, though I got a nice scratch through one nipple.  After that, she headed downstairs.  I backed off so she could have room to return to the cat room or the bathroom, but she didn't.  

So, it's now approaching three days.  Neither of them has eaten anything or used the cat box (though if Dum used the basement cat's box, we wouldn't know).  I can't tell if they drank anything.  They have now found less obvious hiding places so I can't disturb them further.  From here, I guess it's a waiting game.

The "pound rescue" operation ends up with a rather large collection of cats and dogs.  The person who handed these two off to us fosters about fifteen as well as works for a living.  So they don't get much human interaction.  Sigh.