Just what I need, more books!

Despite the fact that my bookshelves are as overcrowded as my local hospital, I just added significantly to the load. I was in my favourite thrift store today looking for a book to use as a floating book bookshelf and instead found The Reader’s Digest Great Encyclopedic Dictionary, in three volumes, no less. What first got my attention was the endpapers, which show examples of ancient writing from all over the world. The cuneiform example is especially cool because it is embossed so the other side of the paper has raised cuneiform on it. Volume Three is what sealed the deal, though. It is full of topical dictionaries, the most fun of which has to be the section on rhyming (Cockney) slang. I also found a nice little Collins edition of The Moonstone, an adaptation of which I saw and enjoyed recently.

Redbooks

In case you noticed something odd about my monitor, yes, it is indeed standing on its side. If you would like to teach your monitor this trick, there are a couple of steps. The first is to get a monitor stand that pivots (or rotates—the terminology varies). The second is to get the display to rotate. Some video cards may have this functionality built in, but if not you might be able to modify the driver to allow the display to rotate. All I had to do was add a few lines to my video driver and then I was able to set the rotation using the video driver icon in my system tray (you might have to go into your display settings to make this icon appear). If you want to go this route I would suggest going to the online support forum for your video card and asking around. The other option is to buy software such as PivotPro, but why pay when you can do it for free?

Since going vertical I’ve never looked back (or sideways). Now I can see most if not all of the content on a web page without scrolling. (How odd that we call vertical motion scrolling when scrolls commonly went sideways… but I digress.) It’s really the only sensible way to view written information. (If you want to watch a movie (or use Google Earth, which doesn’t like rotation) you can easily switch back to landscape while you work.) As I understand it, the reason monitors have a landscape orientation is because the engineers just copied TV technology and never thought to change it. There are now some high end monitors that have pivoting built in, but a pivoting stand and a little programming will do the trick.

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6 comments on “Just what I need, more books!

  1. Andrew says:

    You didn't manage to get to the Times Colonist book sale over the weekend? (I restrained as I knew I'd overspend and I've been bad lately)

  2. Sylvia says:

    No, I didn't hear about it until it was over.

  3. Stefanie says:

    Nice book finds. And a delightfully geeky thing to do to your monitor. I have a laptop so there will be no rotating my screen!

  4. Sylvia says:

    No, I guess laptops are doomed to landscape orientation unless they can figure out some snazzy way to make the screen flip and turn.

  5. Amazing. I read this post, and then noticed that you had the same monitor. Checked out my setting, rotated my screen – and bingo – I have a huge digital book screen! This is great fun, though I am not sure that the digital display works quite so well? or is it just my imagination and not being used to the new orientation? I love this bit of info though 🙂

  6. Sylvia says:

    Hi Judy! I'm glad it worked for you. I agree that it doesn't look quite as sharp rotated but I don't notice it any more. I hope it catches on and future monitors are made more rotation-friendly.

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