“Compassion is passion with a heart.” Anonymous
My theme: something about books, something about poetry, and something about tech – QA in specific. And C is Clever: C is for Coraline, Cascade and Cloud
A side note: Yesterday was International Children’s Book Day in honor of Hans Christian Andersen’s birthday. To check out a whole list of fun literary holidays that might provide inspiration for your reading and blogging, check my post here. And of course, you can check my blog for children’s books – with a search for now; I plan to make it easier to navigate my blog soon.
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C is Clever: C is for Coraline:
Below is what I wrote about the book in a Top Ten Halloween Reads post on my blog a while ago –
Age level 8 – 12 years (and more – I read it as an adult). Neil Gaiman never fails, and while it was the movie I saw first, I knew why I loved the movie when I read the book (and loved it even more!).
And I somehow never ended up reviewing this book on my blog earlier so it follows.
The book’s creepiness crawls up on you as you turn the pages, and slowly, you look around and realize you are in that world. One where a snotty cat appears and disappears, a mouse circus is getting ready for its act somewhere, buttons have replaced eyes, and there is danger lurking right around there. Yet in that intense creepiness, there is also humour, and wisdom, and warmth.
Coraline is spunky, intelligent, bored; she wishes for parents who were not so busy working always, and for regular food instead of ‘recipes’. But you know the saying that you should be careful what you wish for because you might just get it. And Coraline realizes that getting what you wish for is not always all that great. She says it best herself:
“I don’t want whatever I want. Nobody does. Not really. What kind of fun would it be if I just got everything I ever wanted? Just like that, and it didn’t mean anything. What then?”
Every character, every word in this book is meant to be. Picking a favorite character (excluding Coraline) is a toughie – each one is fleshed out so well (even those that are just memories with no names). And as for favorite quotes, I started bookmarking phrases from the book for that purpose, but found myself inundated with quotes and stopped (almost like the rain described in the book)
“It wasn’t the kind of rain you could go out in, it was the other kind, the kind that threw itself down from the sky and splashed where it landed. It was rain that meant business.”
Neil Gaiman says of the book – “Where it all came from-……- I have no real idea. It built itself and told itself, a word at a time.” I have to add that each word belongs, and each word is magical indeed.
Read the book if you have not already!
I recall watching this in the theater with my kids; and the opening scenes/title reel itself totally blew my mind. And then, the movie started. It was eerily magical and we were both glad and sad when the closing credits finally rolled by on the screen. Glad to escape that eeriness for a bit and sad to lose the magic.
Since I watched the movie first, and then read the book, it was a very different experience. Neither took away that magic from the other.
I did wish that the movie had been made truer to the book when I read it later. Since the book is amazing, brilliant, clever all by itself!
Note: The book, in my opinion, was creepier than the movie – that is the power of our imaginations however! And therein lies the power of the book also.
The Question: Book or Movie:
Well, in this case, I find myself unable to cast a vote. But if forced to make a decision, as a bonafide book-lover, I will pick the book any and every time.
To order the book and/or the movie, click on the links below:
“Compassion is a verb.” Thich Nhat Hanh
C is for Cascade poetry
Created by Udit Bhatia, the Cascade form “is all about receptiveness, but in a smooth cascading way like a waterfall”. There is no set meter or rhyme scheme. The defining feature of the form is that the lines of the first stanza are repeated as refrain lines in subsequent stanzas to give a “cascading effect”. S1 L1 is repeated as the last line of S2, S1 L2 is repeated as the last line of S3, and so on until all lines in S1 have been used. The number of stanzas is therefore one more than the number of lines in S1. – Source – PoetsCollective
You can make this poem as short or long as you want it to by decreasing or increasing the number of lines in the first stanza.
My attempt at the cascade is here in this earlier post on my blog.
C is for the Cloud:
This is a term many of you might have seen floating around like, pardon the pun, clouds in the sky, all over the internet. The tech industry is known for coming up with buzzwords, and soon everyone is using it, and no one seems to really know what those buzzwords mean often.
So fear not, for I have been(and will be) in that situation many times where we walk into meetings and use buzzwords and acronyms with straight faces until a newbie joins the meeting and asks – ‘what does that mean?’ You should see the blank faces of (almost)everyone then (including yours truly!)
So I now try to find out what a buzzword or acronym means the first time I hear it, at least just a little bit. And here is the little bit about the ‘cloud’ for you. (and I included this today in the QA corner, since the ‘cloud’ needs to be tested too)
What it is:
The cloud, in this case, does not refer to those fluffy(not always) things up in the sky. The ‘cloud’ refers to software, infrastructure, and services that run on the Internet, instead of locally on your computer.
So instead of storing and accessing your files and data from a local physical device, you now are storing them on the ‘cloud’ and accessing them from any internet-capable device, anywhere, anytime.
It is simply ‘out there’ and you do not need to worry about the details of hows and wheres, but just that it is ready for you to use on-demand.
Pros and Cons (Highlights):
It literally is available at your fingertips no matter where you are, no matter when you need it. Examples of everyday uses of the cloud include using the Apple iCloud, the Google Drive, Dropbox, SoundCloud and other familiar services in addition to the many other business driven cloud services
This global availability allows for convenience, collaboration, comfort and more. The ‘cloud’ is a clever solution for all this.
You do not have to worry about storage problems anymore – imagine if you had to actually buy enough hard-drives to store every single photo you have taken, every blog post you have written and all those zillions you have drafted, and all those other files and data that you know/think you need someday – well, you don’t have the physical space for that for one thing (the other, well, it is expensive!).
Well, now all those files and data, whether private or public based on your settings and usage, are not really fully under your control, are they? So how safe is it? What is being done with the data?
Those are the questions we need to deal with and ensure we do due diligence on our part to make the best use of the ‘cloud’ since it is here to stay.
Additional Links to Read More:
- Some details on cloud testing here and here
- And you simply have to read this post here that tells you 20 different ways of how to explain cloud computing to 5 year olds! 🙂
Wrapping up the C post:
“Use your voice for kindness, your ears for compassion, your hands for charity, your mind for truth, and your heart for love.” Anonymous
So there you have it – my take on the letter C for this time. What are your thoughts on this? Do you have any questions on any of them? I will be glad to answer them. Any comments and opinions on these welcome too! Previous posts for this challenge are in links below.
Linking up to BlogChatter A to Z, A to Z Blogging Challenge, and the Ultimate Blogging Challenge (click on the images to learn more about these challenges)