A bit of this and that

What caught my eye tonight? (Not including crime-fiction-related material, which is captured at Friend Feed, where you are welcome to look and join in.)

From Big Bad Book Blog: "Assuming you haven’t had the time, energy, or mental aptitude for legal matters to get to the bottom of what’s going on with Google Book Search and the settlement reached last October, we highly recommend this helpful FAQ from Wired. It gets directly to the root issues of the debate sans stuffiness or legalese." This is an important issue and I think it is worth thinking about it – especially if you are a book publisher or institutional librarian. This may seem obvious but many publishers seem to be taking a "head in the sands" approach to Google's plans – which, according to Wired, could end up costing libraries, rather than benefiting them.

Gage Henry writes a very astute post at Based on Books  on the film vs book of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, the pivotal book in J. K. Rowling's transcendental series. It is such a pleasure to read a well-argued post from someone who "gets" both what the author and the film maker were aiming at, and who analyses the differences well.

When should kids start dating? This question is posed by Jennifer Howse at the Times Alpha Mummy blog (which I follow with vicarious interest as it is mostly about issues concerning parenting young children – I would have found it essential support reading when in that crazy, unsettling situation myself!). My own answer is "the graph does not have it right" – but the point of the post is to draw readers' attention to something called "funny graphs", which may be worth checking out for gems such as "fear of swine 'flu vs knowledge".

And, via being a blogger on the Typepad platform, here's news of an interesting blog: Daily Routines, "how writers, artists and other interesting people organise their days". It is categorised by various systems, including occupations and habits: scientists, unsurprisingly, don't get a mention per se. Even so, a dangerously intriguing blog.


11 thoughts on “A bit of this and that

  1. Those funny graphs were hilarious because they had more than a hint of the truth in them.

  2. Thanks for pointing to some interesting sites – now I know why its worth following you on twitter!
    I too love Prisoner of Azkaban, and appreciate the review, although I don’t entirely agree with it. Here’s a comment I left there – and am posting here as well since you pointed me thither:
    Good review, and I agree with you for the most part. This is my favorite of the HP movies, and arguably the one in the series that can stand on its own in cinematic terms. I think the directorial choices in this one, more than in any other in the series, have only enhanced the story telling rather than diminish it, so I wouldn’t necessarily deduct points for losing some things. Cuaron did the best job (that we’ve seen so far) of truly translating Rowling’s book into the language of cinema – and also got some of the best performances out of the young actors.
    Ron does get short shrift, but I disagree with you on Hermione – I think this movie belongs to her, especially at the pivot point of time travel upon which the final exciting sequence rests. And Cuaron has allowed her personality to show far more here than the other directors. I don’t think she’s reduced to an “insufferable know-it-all” – and the film does highlight how her knowledge is a large part of the “fortune” Harry is blessed with.

  3. You are evil. I’m going to be addicted to funny graphs now … just another thing to add to the list of distractions that stop me from doing the things I should be doing.

  4. LOL
    I knew my daughters were too old – judged by any standard – and certainly their mother´s (who was engaged at the age of 17)

  5. Wow, Dorte, I had no idea you were engaged at 17! In the “parent” hitogram, I’d be off the top of the scale.
    Madhu: I do think the film downnplayed Hermione’s role vis a vis the book (book 3). It is probably the best of the HP films so far, but all of them suffer from being synopses of the books, as the review points out. That’s my main problem with the films – thesimply lack th esoul of the books. Michael Gambon’s interpretation of Dumbledore is particularly poor (Richard Harris had him down to a T.)

  6. That was supposed to say “histogram” but owing to a commenting but, I am having to type blind, hence lots of typos.

  7. Yes, Maxine, I agree that the HP movies miss much from the books. Cuaron did a better job than anyone else so far, and I wonder how the series might have turned out if he was at the helm all the way through. Oh well.
    The biggest missing elements – one that really galls my 9-yo daughter – are Dobby and the elves. Especially after reading Deathly Hallows where their story line is so significant. How did Rowling allow them to cut out most of that thread from the middle movies?

  8. And BTW, thanks for the link to graphjam as well. My favorite right now (with finals week approaching here) is the venn diagram on Final Exams. I’ve posted that on my class blog as a study guide for my students!

  9. Those graphs have gone down a treat at my work (where swine flu panic was in major overdrive). You should know that your injection of humour saved more than one life (well saved more than one person’s sanity anwyay).

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