Monday, July 12, 2010

don't get me started with the cutesy headlines...

So my news reader shows me this: "Check it out - or click it out - from New York Public Library"
by Christopher Schuetze, Sunday, July 11th 2010
but let me first say this: all you news sites that have started embedding hidden code when I copy/paste are really pissing me off.

I don't know if you visitors blog news, but these news sites now tack on all this extra code when you copy, like this,
Read more: htp://

I understand that the aggregator link whores have driven you to this, but I'm just an honest, hard-working blogger; I'm not one of the thousands of blogger sites out there stealing your crap so they can sell ads. Look, I don't even have ads. Except for my contract with British Petroleum ("Our product is so awesome, we're giving it back to the ocean.").

It's bad enough that you hotlink to everything, so I can't even move my mouse three millimeters without activating some scripted popup. The particular NY Daily News story has 13 links including one for America. So I can click on that to see every story the paper has done on America???!!! That's super useful for my research.

But let me get back to the cutesy little headline, "Check it out - or click it out."

What the hell is that? Did the library come up with that gem?

Why "click it out"? Because you click the mouse to download the ebook? It hurts my brain to read that. What are you going to call it when the download goes to an iPhone? Tap it out? Pinch it out? Pinch it and spread it? Because I swear to God, if I hear some guy in the library just sitting there saying, "pinch it and spread it" over and over, I'm calling the cops. I don't care what he's downloading.

And here is a comment I don't understand:

"I would not have thought, 10 years ago, that I would be comfortable with reading digital books," said [Anne] Thornton [director of reference].
Aren't librarians supposed to be nerds? Well, it seems Anne is not nerd enuf.

Really? Not comfortable reading digital. I played over a dozen Infocom and other text adventures on my computer in 1980s, with my eyes swollen and red from not blinking for three hours straight and I traveled w or se or wandered through a maze of twisty little passages, all alike.

Don't tell me that wasn't reading.
In a 1983 Washington Post article, employee Michael Dornbrook expressed a similar sentiment: “Dornbrook believes Infocom's games are ‘the beginning of a new art form,’ one that ‘could be a significant percentage of book reading 20 years from now'”
(Suplee, Curt. “Through the Zorking Glass.” Washington Post, December 22 1983,

So it's been more than 20 years. Who ever said that computer nerds were good at math.