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Sunday, October 3, 2021


Books on my Desk

I just finished reading The Ipcress File and now I've picked up The Terror again. I'm spent so much time with this book (a few pages at a time, whenever I have to wait for something, for months) that I feel compelled to finish it. 

We also have The C Programming Language here because I can never remember whether the source or the count is the second parameter to the library function movmem*. So these three books are on my desk, and I thought their physical condition is worth commenting on.

The Terror spent months being hauled around in my bag. It didn't seem to be of robust construction to start with, so it's no surprise that it's falling apart. This copy has a lived a full and useful life. When I have finished it, I will commit it to the great recycler in Toledo.

The Ipcress File is roughly the same thickness as The Terror even though it only holds one third the number of pages. I don't remember how I came by this copy, but it's a nice copy (Franklin Mystery Library) that's been sitting in the bookcase for eons. They (Franklin) inflate their pages to make their books look more impressive. At least they didn't inflate them with clay. I picked up a small atlas one time, 'one page for every country' or some such. It was a normal size book, not oversize like at atlas typically is, and I swear it weighed three pounds. Clay gives the paper a smoother finish which is what you want for detailed images. That's the story I remember anyway.

The C Programming Language is about half the thickness of The Ipcress File but has roughly the same number of pages - 280~. In spite of being a zillion years old and being well used (mostly the dozen or so pages in the back that describe the library functions) it is still mostly holding together. There are a few pages at the very back that will fall out occasionally and will have to be put back. So far, so good, i.e. I don't think I've lost any.

Cropped Screenshot of Google Lens Results

When I pulled up the image (top) on Google Photos, it asked if I wanted to extract the text, and I thought, sure, why not? Let's see what Google Lens can do. The words it found are the gray highlighted** text at the right side of this image. I don't know where it got 'trusted', but it got the SNOWWIS NE by reading the author's name backwards (the blue trapezoid enclosing most of the author's name).

* I asked Google about memove and the first page it returned is from a guy in Russia. That's pretty cool. He got the source and destination reversed, but what do you expect from a place where half their letters are backwards?

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