Humor in Science and Theology

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From Revenge of the Librarians by Tom Gauld.

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Ooooh…that is so true! Thank you. We have bought 3 new book cases for our books (including those belonging to the kids), and we already are back to piles and looking for a new one (or painfully considering giving some away–but there are so many good memories associated iwth each of them!)

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My new bookcase is in my pocket.

That said - we still have a lot of hardcopy books around. But most of my reading is from a screen now. Not the same - I know. And yet … I can’t help but thinking that the old model for publishing - paper, then sold from brick and mortar, is not long-term sustainable. At least not on the scales of magnitude that it has been.

Maybe our new ‘brick-and-mortar’ needs to be in our heads. As in we share our book knowledge around as communities of teachers and mutual disciplers!

And then again … maybe it’s appropriate that this is in the humor thread.

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I kind of have the same sense you do. e-books, for better or worse,. are the new standard. I still like hardcopies, and I am still a sucker for an old out-of-print book I might come across in a used bookstore. I do just like the cartoon portrays quite naturally, but often it is buying another e-book.

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Yes–great point. Our kids do use Hoopla and Libby (more local library system). However, I struggle about the screen time for them, a bit–I am not sure of the relative benefit over books there. Also, there is some really questionable material out there–and children as they are, it’s harder to make sure of the quality of on line loans they get, than the hardcover books. We do try to talk to them about books they read, and we read together every night. We don’t restrict them from everything, by any means–but we try to read through and discuss racism, prejudice, and violence as much as possible together (without going overboard)

An aunt of mine works for Barnes and Noble–and apparently there’s a swing back among Gen Zers to use hard copy books, and there is a very slight reversal in terms of book stores closing. I’m not sure what to do there.

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And of course, there are the books that are only available as physical copies (like a lot of older-but-still-copyrighted reference works).

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I’m the same, but I’ve noted that the proofreading on e-books is atrocious compared to print!

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I just wish I could change the page color! I used to have a reading program where I could choose page and letter colors, and found it could be very relaxing having brown letters on plae green background.

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Can’t think of the name, but there’s an organization dedicated to scanning out-of-print books and making them available as e-books.

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Those work well most of the time, one just has to make sure that the plates were scanned well for being plates [They are not line drawings! They are not pure black and white! They should not be blurry, they should be close to the original orientation, they should actually be there, etc.]

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Kindle allows for some color choices, but as I recall they are limited to a few colors. I often read at night in bed with white letters on black background and the blue light filter on. It works better than the old days when I had a real book and book light which made it harder for my wife to sleep while I read.

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Giving printed books away is not so easy today. We had to get rid of many big boxes of books because of moving, nobody wanted them. Salvation Army took some but then said their stores are full of used books. Library people went through my professional books and took some but could not take many - space and cost problems, they have to pay rent for every square meter of space. The only advice we got was to tear the book covers away and then throw the book to paper recycling. The books that were destroyed had costed a small fortune but in the end, worth nothing.

Makes you think what has lasting value in this world - can good humor have lasting effects?

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I’m amazed at just how bad scans can be and the software will still convert the images to text.

The biggest problem is that maps or diagrams don’t convert well. Yet.

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Reminds me of a situation I encountered where to control a certain invasive plant species the wildlife folks introduced a certain weevil with its preferred food being that plant’s seeds. But the weevil started munching on some other plants once the invasives started to be rare, so they introduced a species of beetle that preyed on that weevil. They ended up introducing one more species, a kind of millipede that fed on the eggs of those two species – and only those two species!

Every several years the millipedes seem to be winning, so the invasive plants surge again, and two years later the weevils do, and then the beetles, and finally the millipedes again. Happily, one bird species have decided that the millipedes make decent food, so the equlibrium has evened out somewhat.

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I ended up using a stack of outdated textbooks and old romance novels from an apartment that had suffered a small fire to feed my own fire. I winced at every book I consigned to the flames, but consoled myself with the fact that my evenings were warmer for several hours.

Of course I used those hours to read new books . . . .

Purple loosestrife, maybe?