Saturday, December 15, 2012
Slimline jewel cases and other paradoxolutions
The slimline jewel case was someone's (rather profitable, I imagine) idea of a solution to a problem. The problem was space.
Being pretty much exactly one-half the depth of normal jewel cases, one can fit twice as many slimline-encased CDs — or DVDs or, I suppose, jewels — in the space needed for the original cases.
I can proudly say that, over the course of several years, I've finally reached the point of having partially converted my CD collection to slimline jewel cases.
As a result, my space problem has been alleviated.
But my finding-what-I-want-to-listen-to problem has been intensified.
The slimline cases — without spines to speak of and therefore without spine labels — stare out at me anonymously from their shelves, as if to say, "...ask yourself one question: 'Do I feel Lucky?'"
Even in a dimly lit room, my aging eyes can immediately spot the yet-to-be-converted CDs for that budget version of Vivaldi's Four Seasons I like so much; for Simon and Garfunkel's Greatest Hits; for the classic Kind of Blue by Miles Davis. Their spine labels — the colors, the typefaces, how everything is arranged and aligned in that precious 708 square millimeters of real estate — have been etched onto my brain for what seems like forever.
Sometimes we create new problems by solving old ones.
If we do or make things for customers, it's probably not a bad idea to test our solutions to ensure they're not paradoxolutions.
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