Subject: Viridian Note 00112: The Organic Novel

Key concepts: imaginary products, fungal typography,
biotech literary products

Attention Conservation Notice: It's another in our serio- comic series of "products" that don't actually exist.

Entries in the Viridian Solar Switchplate Contest: The above entries are on the Viridian graphics site:

Arrived too late for the contest, but have a look:

And the winner is:

Christian R. Trifilio (*) at: Christian R. Trifilio receives the contest prize, a plug- in "Enlightened Masterpiece" night-light, featuring Renoir's "Bal du Moulin de la Galetta."

From:^? (David Klencke)

David Klencke writes:

"This Viridian imaginary product was motivated by Natalie Jeremijenko's 'stumps' concept and our brave new 'paperless' society. Here is the catalogue ad copy:

"Online documents are great for searching and scanning reference material, but reading a novel online fails to satisfy. However, killing a tree (which would otherwise be detoxing our atmosphere) to print hard copy seems so archaically 'twen-cen.'

"The modern answer is The Organic Novel. The size and shape of a traditional hardback book, it is handsomely bound in the rich 'leather' of the bioenhanced leaves of the Talipot Palm.

"Inside, however, the 'book' is its own literary biosphere. The text is downloaded from the web to a bio- based ZIP card that is inserted into one of four ports in the 'organic novel.' Then, the front/left half of the book grows new pages while the book is not in use. Pages are delivered and stored in the back/right half to be consumed at your leisure. When you are done with the pages, simply throw them away. The are completely bio- reclaimable. Pages are best read within 48 hours.

"How it works: Four small tubes contain anaerobic algae in each of three primary colors and black. The algae reproduce rapidly, providing a nearly inexhaustible source of enlightening print, swiftly and silently created by a near-relation of the scum drained from your corner landfill. Individual cells of color-enhanced algae have been engineered to bond with each other when a small electric current is applied. The result is a translucent organic 'page,' a single cell thick. The algae have ridged cellulose walls to provide lateral stability to the tissue-thin page.

"The biotech pages are unreadable when stacked, but as individual pages are peeled from the stack on the right and laid on the white reading surface on the left, their readability rivals the best chemical printers. Small solar cells are woven throughout the cover and spine so that energy can be stored from office or home lighting when the novel is not in use. The pages can be grown at the rate of eight per hour, so your next 50 pages can be generated overnight. The cells lose their enhanced brilliance after a few days, and the printout will rot entirely if not read within a week."

David Klencke (^*?)

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