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Friday, March 2, 2007

Virginia Woolf in Chinese Sounds Just Like John Hodgman in English

posted by on March 2 at 11:46 AM

… and that’s problem number one with Call Numbers: The Library Recordings, a sonic-library-data art project by the artist Laiwan.

It works like this: Find a book in the Vancouver Public Library’s catalogue (here). Copy the call number and paste it into the music-maker (here). Then wait a couple of minutes and your call number will be translated into what the music critics might call “a lush soundscape.” Whatever. It sounds like an oscillator and a stoned guy spacing out in front of a drum kit.

And it sounds like that no matter who you put in. Theodore Roethke’s collected poems sounds like this.

John Hodgman’s The Areas of My Expertise sounds like this.

Ben Okri’s The Famished Road sounds like this. But so does Mrs. Dalloway and Absurdistan and every other novel in the universe because the call sign for all of them is “FIC.”

That’s problem number two.

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Doesn't Mudede have the patent on that sort of thing?

Posted by rodrigo | March 2, 2007 1:06 PM

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