Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Bookshelf Periscope

To prevent library-induced neck damage.
  (+7)
(+7)
  [vote for,
against]

The user dons the periscope (perhaps an eyepiece strapped on like a pirate's eyepatch) which instead of transating the view as normal periscopes do, rotates it 90 degrees clockwise, thus removing the need to keep the neck craned for all those hundreds of shelf-metres.
friendlyfire, Mar 25 2003

[link]






       Ha! +
krelnik, Mar 25 2003
  

       genius :) +1   

       why don't publishers write down wards on books? e.g.
v
i
l
e
  

       b
o
d
i
e
s
po, Mar 25 2003
  

       Brilliant. Also comes in useful at the video store. The only addition I'd suggest is a 'flip', which rotates 90 degrees anticlockwise, for those awkward volumes whose name is printed the other way around.
-alx, Mar 25 2003
  

       The potential geometrical misalignments between person and book spine that can occur when looking for a book are mind-boggling. The text may be sideways, but it may also be at the wrong height (too high or too low). Furthermore, when walking down the aisle, the books are to your side. Why not give it 3-axis flippibility and extendibility, so that regardless of the relative orientations and positions of reader and book, you can always position the periscope for most-agronomical browsing?
AO, Mar 25 2003
  

       Perhaps someone can put a small label on each book, oriented in the correct direction. On these labels they can put numbers that indicate where a book belongs. We can create an entire numbering system, so that books in related topics would be near each other. Then maybe they can create some sort of index so that you can look up where your book is located. Then on each row of shelves they can label what range of book numbers are contained in that row. Wait, this is getting too complex - nobody would ever bake this.
Worldgineer, Mar 25 2003
  

       Worldgineer, you obviously go to a better-maintained library than me - at my local, I'm lucky if fiction is kept separate from non-fiction. If you're just browsing to see if any subject catches your fancy, that's when the Bookshelf Periscope comes into its own. Besides, most of the people in my area only go into the library to keep warm until the pub opens.
friendlyfire, Mar 25 2003
  

       I was just giving you a hard time. I agree there's a real problem to be addressed. Perhaps a simpler solution, which you can carry anywhere with you: learn to read sideways.
Worldgineer, Mar 25 2003
  

       Brilliant. Make it mandatory uniform for librarians and library assistants. Yarr!
Aside: law libraries, which are the libraries that I'm in most, don't suffer from this problem to that great an extent - the majory of the volumes are made up of fairly hefty bindings of journals, sufficiently wide that the titles can be printed horizontally. That's not to denigrate the idea any - it's mint - just an observation on law libraries. Now returning you to your scheduled programming.
my face your, Mar 25 2003
  

       I love the many images evoked by this idea and its associated annotations. I am likewise charmed by the inclusion of Waugh's best title in your demonstration, [po]. No eating in the library, so smuggle this suspiciously soft item out in your coat, [friendly].
brenna, Mar 25 2003
  

       was it something by waugh? blimey my mind was elsewhere :)
po, Mar 25 2003
  

       Ah, you can feign ignorance [po], but we know better...
-alx, Mar 25 2003
  

       Wow, I didn't know anyone read Evelyn Waugh anymore. Yay!
snarfyguy, Mar 25 2003
  

       Who is she?
AO, Mar 25 2003
  

       Idea = genius. I get library neck every day. Never fun. +.
sambwiches, Mar 25 2003
  

       Every day? For you I recommend learning to read sideways. Turn your monitor on it's side for the rest of the week. I said do it!
Worldgineer, Mar 25 2003
  

       sp: recommend
po, Mar 25 2003
  

       AO: Evelyn Waugh (1903 - 1966) English writer, regarded by many as the leading satirical novelist of his day. Most famous for "Brideshead Revisited," which is far from his best work. Yes, his. It's one of those girls' names limeys name boys. Curious.
snarfyguy, Mar 25 2003
  

       Woo-yay! My first double pastry!   

       You can't see, of course, but I just did a little double-pastry dance.
friendlyfire, Mar 25 2003
  

       Does the double pastry dance involve a suit made from the cast off formal attire of penguins?
Freelancer, Mar 25 2003
  

       No - I place two croissants on the floor across each other, and skip around them, singing "I got a double, for all my trouble. My idea was so tasty, that it got a second pastry."   

       Nude.
friendlyfire, Mar 25 2003
  

       "Woo Yay!" friendlyfire? Are you reserving "Houpla!" for a 2.5er?
my face your, Mar 25 2003
  

       pastry-dance so funny! wish I could give another bun.
po, Mar 25 2003
  

       Eep - cross-site idiom leakage from www.b3ta.com, on which I have taken to lurking.
friendlyfire, Mar 25 2003
  

       I was just joking, [snarf]. But I wonder if Mr. and Mrs. Waugh regretted naming him Evelyn after they read “Brideshead Revisited.”   

       “Rocky Waugh” has a nice ring to it.
AO, Mar 25 2003
  

       Good idea! (+). And I want to see another dance if you hit 2 œ.
Shz, Mar 26 2003
  

       definitely need the (il)logical extension to Harold's bit there - everyone learn to levitate in the elegant pose used by ladies in pre-Raphaelite paintings or Romans having dinner. Would lead to interesting moments when you move from the section of English books to American (titles written up to down for English, so tilt your head/yourself to the right... for American, tilt your head/yourself all the way over!)
badgers, Mar 29 2003
  

       I like this...despite being one of the tallest kids in my grade, even i can't read the top titles in the library. i have no idea how those teeny librarians do it. have any of you seen, in old movies or possibly your library if you're lucky, a ladder that slides along the shelves? these have the same purpose, and look like a lot of fun. i think one appears in "the music man"
igirl, Mar 29 2003
  

       Congrats Friendly! – now let’s see that 2 œ dance!
Shz, Mar 29 2003
  

       " ( : "
"/|\ "
"/ \ "
thumbwax, Mar 29 2003
  

       Yes! Huzzah!   

       (Nude, but for two extra-large criossants worn as shoes, and the half worn in a "Red Hot Chili Peppers sock" manner):   

       At long last I got 2.5,
One less thing to do in life,
The croissants taste so sweet,
I spread honey on them with my knife.
  

       I hasten to add, the croissants I'm eating are not the same croissants as I'm wearing - I'll leave those to the inevitable hordes of HB-groupies who flock to any 2.5-er   

       Well? I'm waiting...
---
I've now been thrown out of the library for naked dancing, and still not a groupie in sight. The pigeons are looking at me in a disturbing way though...
friendlyfire, Mar 30 2003
  

       Wasn't this "searching bookshelves" problem solved by Amazon.com?
eyeguy, Jan 23 2004
  

       I'd be interested to see if friendlyfire can communicate loss-of-croisant torment through the medium of dance.
calum, Feb 22 2005
  

       Probably some kind of mime-like chewing motions....or worse.
normzone, Feb 22 2005
  

       Nooooo!
(twirl, reach skyward, drop to knees)
  

       My precious, beautiful foodstuffs!
(up onto one knee,clenched fists held to chest)
  

       Come back to me!
(arms straight, palms held out at waist-level, feet in lunging position)
friendlyfire, Feb 24 2005
  

       (applause)(throws bun at [ff])
Worldgineer, Feb 24 2005
  

       (Bun, though well-intentioned and appreciated, goes stale in transatlantic flight, hits ff in shin)   

       Ow! My shin!
(fall on arse, clutch injured shin, kick out in air with other leg to resemble sped-up footage of a sea anemone)
friendlyfire, Feb 24 2005
  
      
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