Bibloiphile with his selection of classic and modern Science Fiction books.
The Scottish Word:


Whit tae dae? Whit tae dae? I’m switherin atween reading yin o mha digital buiks o the pochle I hae oan my slippery peerie tait o a screen here or tak in some classic Sci Fi Frae mha skelfs o muckle pepper yins there wi their lairge prent.

Alang wi their greater resolution, reality, textures, smells, heft, ahn physicality o interaction – wi a wee dram tae wash it doon.

THAT’s whit memories are made of.


lairge: large, generous lavish, ample in quantity.

What to do? What to do? I’m undecided between reading one of my digital books from the collection I have on my slippery little insubstantial screen here or take in some classic Sci Fi from my shelves of big paper books there with their large print.

Along with their greater resolution, reality, textures, smells, heft, and physicality of interaction – accompanied with a little glass of whisky to wash it down.

THAT is what memories are made of.

The Scottish Word: lairge with its definition and its meaning illustrated and captioned with the word used in context in the Scots language and in English.

Digital or Physical?

There is no correct answer. The answer is – it depends.

I used to show media comparisons to clients building visitor centre who were always after the latest and greatest media gadgets full of bells and whistles.

Media Comparisons.

The media comparisons were to demonstrate to them that in many cases old school was the most effective choice for their needs by an order of magnitude. That choice always depended on their objectives, location, target audience and desired results.

Taking Control.

The same applies to you. Digital or physical? Make choices because if you drift unthinkingly into only digital you may be giving up a lot of brain strength you might not want to lose.

Use it or lose it applies to the brain as well as to muscle.

Don’t underestimate yourself.

Do not underestimate yourself. A lot of what the digital does your brain does just as well or better. Only we take it for granted and don’t notice. Like a fish doesn’t notice water.

Ever open a book retrieved from a room full of books to find the passage you were looking for first time or within a page or two? A lot of people can do that.

Look in an index and flicked to the numbered page required? Look for a word on a page and your eye flicked to that very word?

Search for words and spellings at the speed of light? If you can write you do that already.

Look up meanings you know – the same. Practice makes you stronger at it. Letting the digital do it all the time will make you weaker.

Muscle Building.

So the choice is; what brain muscles can you afford to let slide and which do you choose to strengthen?

Alternatively – let yourself go – and slide into oblivious weak contentment like a bovine chewing the cud in an empty field.

Book Burning.

But if you let yourself go bovine then you give nearly all your thinking strength and control over onto the digital. And that is where book burners will thrive.

We all have to bear responsibility for the strength of our thinking so as to be able to resist those modern book burners.

Digital book burning is the worst kind because you don’t see it happening.

Information starts to not be there until we forget that it is missing simply by not letting search engines let you find it. Not burnt. Just buried. That’s a lot harder to do to real books in the real world.

Insidious ‘Truth’.

And yet other information that the book burners would prefer you to learn surfaces and becomes all pervading in a slow and insidious way. Becoming the ‘truth’. Like boiling a frog by heating the water up slowly. We as a mob would never notice. In fact we already don’t.

So if you are pointing the finger of blame and hatred at other peoples or things then you are the bovine ignorantly chewing the cud – allied with the book burners.

Science Fiction.

I read science fiction because it gives us an often far flung perspective outside our little bubble of experience of how things are or should be.

The authors imagine other societies and impacts of technologies and alien cultures as thought experiments. And we the readers get our minds broadened.

The Books.

The illustration for Lairge contains a lot of my favourite books. Some from way back and a few more recent. This link lets you examine the illustration at a larger size where if you peer at it you should make out most of the titles.

World Book Day.

World Book Day is a registered charity on a mission to give every child and young person a book of their own. It’s also a celebration of authors, illustrators, books and (most importantly) it’s a celebration of reading. In fact, it’s the biggest celebration of its kind, designated by UNESCO as a worldwide celebration of books and reading, and marked in over 100 countries all over the world. Running for 23 years.

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