It not just Emoticon Day, it’s Talk Like a Pirate Day. Please don’t.
Archives for September 2008
The Economist reviews Henry Hitchings’s The Secret Life of Words: How English Became English: …a book which is really about the way the English language has roamed the world helping itself liberally to words, absorbing them, forgetting where they came from, and moving on with an ever-growing load of exotics, crossbreeds and subtly shaded near-synonyms…. Continue reading »
Sept. 19, 1982: The electronic smiley face makes its debut. Interpersonal communication will never be the same again.
A new, occasional feature for those I-got-the-diction-blues days, which get more frequent the more time I spend online. Today’s entries: access, process, networked, friend (as a verb).
The Espresso Book Machine, coming soon to a library near you? In 5-7 minutes, the Espresso will deliver a printed-and-bound copy of any book you like (as long as it’s out of copyright and available in digital form through a collection the machine can access). The Espresso’s manufacturer, On Demand Books*, has big dreams for… Continue reading »
Should research conducted with federal dollars be made freely available to the public after it’s published? The NIH says yes. Publishers say not so fast. Last week, Rep. John Conyers Jr. (D-Calif.) introduced a bill, H.R. 6845 or the Fair Copyright in Research Works Act, that would make it a lot harder for federal agencies… Continue reading »
My former colleagues over at the Washington Post Book World are now blogging daily. Check it.
A call for six-word memoirs. (Via the LA Times’s Jacket Copy.)
The BBC has a thoroughly depressing (but worth reading) article on its website today about how human activity is making the oceans too noisy for dolphins and whales to communicate, with serious repercussions for their breeding-and-feeding habits. The Beeb reports on a new report from IFAW, the International Fund for Animal Welfare: Noise generated by… Continue reading »
I don’t have anything useful to say about the suicide of David Foster Wallace, news of which has been widely if sketchily reported in the last 24 hours, except to say that it rattled me more than I’d have expected, and that most of my questions about it will likely never be answered. From my… Continue reading »