About This Particular Web Site
Sometimes, rarely, I’ll be lucky enough to see an illuminated manuscript on exhibit in an art museum or a library. They are old and beautiful documents, written and drawn and colored by hand; they’re protected by thick glass, so I can see only the spread the exhibitor selected. This Web site houses a complete digital facsimile of a beautiful illuminated manuscript. The book is relatively modern, Sonnets from the Portuguese by Elizabeth Barret Browning. The pages of the manuscript are displayed beside a transcription of the text, and you can zoom in on the page to see more detail. It’s a beautiful piece of artwork.
Planning a holiday in Kryvyi Rih and need to know how to pronounce it? Sorry, this site won’t help you. But if you need to know how to get around once you arrive, there is a subway map available. I know, you could just google for the city subway map you need, but it’s convenient to be able to access subway maps for major cities on six different continents (McMurdo Station is sadly lacking in public transit) from one Web site. With a click of a pop-up menu I can jump from city to city, comparing Detroit’s lone people-mover to Tokyo’s remarkable spiderweb of railroad.
Anyone who’s ever bought fast food has surely noticed how little their purchased meal resembles its picture above the register or its close-up on teevee. Nobody brings their burger back up to the counter with a complaint that it doesn’t look like the picture; consumers have learned to expect and to accept less than what was advertised. This Web site shows side-by-side the publicity shot and the actual item. Looking at them that way, it’s kind of comical how unappetizing the real thing looks.
This Web site is so horribly advertising-ridden that I hesitate to write about it here; it is quite frankly an eyesore. But the thing is, it actually does contain some useful information for bibliophiles in the US and Canada. Select your state or province, and you’ll be shown a list of upcoming book sales in the area, sorted by date. Ongoing sales can be browsed by city. Though some commercial sales are included, most of the listed sales are things like library fund-raisers, which often offer huge selections of very inexpensive books as well as an opportunity to help fund a worthy cause.
If you’re capable of looking up a piece of information on Wikipedia and then closing your browser window after finding what you needed, you probably won’t get much out of this site. But if you have trouble resisting an opportunity to wander around picking up interesting little snippets of knowledge, this Web site can be a fun place. The Rudiments of Wisdom are offered in the form of hand-drawn cartoons, indexed by category. Scottish bakers of bad bread were sentenced to the dunking stool. In 1903, a fifty-foot-tall pyramid of pianos was set on fire. Margarine tasted insipid until the 1950s. That’s enough from me. Go forth and learn something strange.
Also in This Series
- About This Particular Web Site · August 2007
- About This Particular Web Site · May 2006
- About This Particular Web Site · December 2005
- About This Particular Web Site · May 2005
- About This Particular Web Site · April 2005
- About This Particular Web Site · September 2004
- About This Particular Web Site · May 2004
- About This Particular Web Site · January 2004
- About This Particular Web Site · December 2003
- Complete Archive