Talk:Book:The Science of Discworld IV: Judgement Day

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The fundamental problem is that the book's useful messages are wasted. AgProv has written some criticism with which I generally agree: the Science is very deep and the Discworld is very shallow. The characters' wavering voices appear again as in Unseen Academicals and they're reduced to spokesmodels like WWII celebrities and cartoon characters. There are clever takes on politicians' attitudes to science which resonate in Canada just now and any amount of the trio's usual skillful research, but Creationists and others who need it won't be buying the book or reading it. For the fans who do buy it it's a letdown on the Discworld side, anyway.

I enjoyed the recognition on page 84 of a curious blind spot in the collective vision. Having been involved myself, these several decades, I can't quite explain how most people think (or don't think) about electicity and electronics. Electronics and the technology of propelling a carriage without horses are about the same age, yet most people understand, in a basic way (Lies-To-Children?), that the automobile works by exploding small amounts of petrol/gasoline and the fuel has to be replenished and once in a while the lubricating oil has to be changed, tires/tyres and brakes wear out. Electronics, which has taken an almost exponential rise in our lives over the last century, is commonly viewed as magic: if it doesn't do whatever you want, the Wizard (that's me) should fix it with a wave of the wand, or by "putting it on the `scope" (a sovereign remedy from automotive technology).

The authors recall an educated colleague who thought that merely screwing an electical outlet box into the wall would provide power. This seems to corroborate the "two solitudes" of British education that have been mentioned here before. It seems less plausible in North America.

And, aside, Mightily Oats was quite a young missionary only about a dozen years ago: he shouldn't be forty yet. Is his hair white from harrowing experiences in Überwald?

--Old Dickens (talk) 01:28, 28 April 2013 (GMT)

Unmentioned Characters

Just been rereading this book (admittedly just the Discworld bits - I find it easier to read every other chapter which makes it seem more like a short story and prevents prompting of deep meaningful thoughts that I haven't time to explore). I've been coming across a few characters who either appear briefly or are mentioned. I must say I don't currently feel confident enough to add them directly to the page - I appreciate the effort that has gone into making this wiki and would hate to mess it up with either information or bad formatting. So I guessed I might as well post them here:

Ponder Stibbons Scattered throughout
Om- Chapter 1, P274
Glenda Sugarbean ? - Chapter 5 P66
Angua von Uberwald - Chapter 23 P303
Sally von Humpeding - Chapter 23 P303

Also a few places in the book which are not mentioned on the page are:

The Patrician's Palace (modified to cater for the trial)

The Great Hall
The Black Gallery

I'll try and keep updating this as I read --Verity (talk) 17:31, 26 December 2013 (GMT)