Baby grants us an audience in the dining room just after sunrise, where photo ops are coming out of the woodwork as feline magnificence interplays with early-morning light.
The blogosphere comes through. Yesterday we asked our readers to help us figure out how to turn scanned book pages into editable type, and two of our best blogbuddies -- Teresa of Technicalities and Brian of A Map of the Cat -- were right there in the comments this morning with moral support, tech talk -- they're so cute when they talk tech -- and a specific link to Simple OCR (optical character recognition), a free character-recognition software application that gave us what we were looking for. Goomp, the Energizer Bunny, was there, as always, cheering us on.
The Babe and the Duncan Phyfe chair -- classical beauty seeks its own level.
The learning curve wasn't too steep, although what with this, that and the other, it took us the better part of the blogging day to scan and convert to editable text Peter F. Rowbotham's "The Importance of Being Noticed." When Norm Geras asked us to "name a work of non-fiction which has had a major and lasting influence on how you think about the world" in our Normblog Profile last fall, here's what we wrote in our email interview:
Dr. Peter F. Rowbotham's 1992 essay -- I stumbled upon it [in Harvard's Tozzer Library] in Person, Place and Thing, an anthology of essays in cultural geography, while doing a grad school paper on neighborhoods and networking -- 'The Importance of Being Noticed'. It's an all-encompassing theory of the universal Darwinian quest for approval amongst one's peers, however defined. It makes sense of everything from Islamofascist death cults to teams of astronauts reaching for the stars, and I've had occasion to cite Rowbotham's thesis early and often on sisu.
Now that we've got all 22 pages of Rowbotham's essay in editable form on our desktop, we're going through the whole thing, page by page, to correct for the inevitable errors that turn up when you convert a scanned image into editable text. For example, Simple OCR doesn't know what to make of the German word Geltung, "a word which has no exact English equivalent, but which he uses to signify worthiness, respect, prestige, standing, importance and validity." We had converted the essay into editable type once before but somehow lost the whole thing -- not to mention our knowledge of how to do it -- in the quagmire of dying computers that we stepped into last summer. That was when we made the switch from Windows to Apple. We didn't have time to wait for Apple's embrace of the Intel processor, which has led this week to the awesome announcement that you can have your cake and eat it too. Fortunately, Tuck has a superb, geek-rebuilt computer with all the latest Windows XP bells and whistles, so by working around, we can still pretty much have it all. Thank God -- but mainly our geek -- for our MaxTor personal storage unit.
Update: The importance of being online.