Thursday, May 24, 2012
Looking for more information after a Forevertron visit, I discovered how Google is looking out for libraries
Accompanied by Cybergabi and Joey, we stopped by the Forevertron the other day, to renew our acquaintance with this stunning built environment that's free and open to the public along Highway 12 between Sauk City and Baraboo, across the road from the now mostly dismantled Badger Ordnance Works, which over the years gave up some of its scrap for the creation of this amazing sculpture garden.
It was one of those gorgeous May days when everything is alive and vibrant. Unfortunately, it was midday, and the light was not great for photography. But it was great for basking in the strange, sun-drenched beauty.
To really do justice to the Forevertron's mystery and magic, you need something like the stunning 1995 photo by Ron Byers that's the cover of Sublime Spaces & Visionary Worlds, a volume about "built environments of vernacular artists" around the country. Significantly, they chose the Forevertron as the cover photo. I found the book when I followed one of the reference links at the bottom of the Wikipedia article on the Forevertron. It took me to this screen on Google Books.
I soon found that the book is long out of print, and you're lucky to be able to get a used copy for $150. But look off to the left. One of the features that Google Books has that Amazon doesn't, for pretty obvious reasons, I guess, is a "Find in a Library" link. It worked flawlessly. One click showed a list of area libraries that had the book, both public and academic. Another click took me to the Madison Public Library, and with another click I reserved it. I picked it up the next day.
I know Google isn't perfect, and no corporation that large and profitable can be totally benign, but I salute them for the library link. It's a real public service.