Incompatible books | Bleader

Saturday, March 3, 2007

Incompatible books

Posted By on 03.03.07 at 07:10 AM

Sign up for our newsletters Subscribe

click to enlarge 1037.jpg

I have too many books. I used to think cataloging them would help, by keeping me from traveling half an hour to a library to get a volume I had on my shelves. I tried out LibraryThing, a hybrid of catalog and social bookmarking, when it was cheap and small, but realized the cataloging process would take way too long. Sadly, I didn't join.

Now, with more than ten million books cataloged by its members, LT offers a feature called the Unsuggester, available to all. You name a book, and the unsearch engine spits out the titles that are least likely to appear in members' catalogs along with it. It's not exactly, "If you like X, you'll hate Y," but it's close. I tried a few:

A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament is least compatible with Chicago author Audrey Niffeneger's excellent SF The Time Traveler's Wife.

The Chicago Manual of Style is least compatible with Shopaholic Takes Manhattan.

William Cronon's Chicago classic Nature's Metropolis is least compatible with The Devil Wears Prada.

Richard Dawkins's controversial The God Delusion is least compatible with the young-adult Girls in Pants: The Third Summer of the Sisterhood

Daniel Dennett's Breaking the Spell is least compatible with The Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood. And Sam Harris's The End of Faith is least compatible with Alanna: The First Adventure.

I'm seeing a pattern here, but it's not what I expected.

Tags: , , ,

Comments (4)

Showing 1-4 of 4

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-4 of 4

Add a comment

More by Harold Henderson

  • The Recyclable House

    The Recyclable House

    If Ken Ortiz has his way, no one in Chicago will ever simply "demolish" a building again.
    • Jul 24, 2008
  • Sympathy for the Devil?

    Sympathy for the Devil?

    Progressive scribe Rick Perlstein made his reputation finding the good in conservatives. Then they really started screwing up the country.
    • Jan 24, 2008
  • Dynamic Flash for Democrats

    Dynamic Flash for Democrats

    Wanna raise funds to run for office? Nag Schwarzenegger about health care? Or just make fun of Bush? Call Articulated Man.
    • Jan 10, 2008
  • More »

Agenda Teaser

Performing Arts
Spamalot Mercury Theater Chicago
August 30
Galleries & Museums
October 23

Tabbed Event Search

The Bleader Archive

Popular Stories