what's Schrödinger's paperback?

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what's Schrödinger's paperback?

Postby noelu » Mon Sep 24, 2012 6:50 am

Just finished the wonderfulGuards! Guards!as my first discworld novel. :D
In the dedication, Terry mentioned "too bad we never used Schrödinger's paperback".
I wonder what that means?
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Re: what's Schrödinger's paperback?

Postby Tonyblack » Mon Sep 24, 2012 7:29 am

The dedication goes:

Terry Pratchett wrote:<snip> And also to Mike Harrison, Mary Gentle, Neil Gaiman and all the others who assisted with and laughed at the idea of L-space; too bad we never used Schrödinger's Paperback . . .

This is just my assumption, but Schrödinger was one of the founders of Quantum mechanics and, presumably, when you apply Quantum to a paperback you get L-space. :?
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Re: what's Schrödinger's paperback?

Postby MongoGutman » Mon Sep 24, 2012 10:48 am

Presumably if you put a paperback in a locked library with a bunch of students there is no way of knowing if the book is being read or not (unless, of course it has mucky pictures in it). The duality of it's read/unread state could be the crotch of the trouserlegs of time and following one or other of the trouserlegs could lead one into an alternate library.
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Re: what's Schrödinger's paperback?

Postby chris.ph » Mon Sep 24, 2012 11:27 am

i thought it was just a posh way of saying you cant judge a book by its cover, as you cant tell what the book is like until you open the cover in the same way you cant tell if schrodingers cats alive until you open the box
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Re: what's Schrödinger's paperback?

Postby Dotsie » Mon Sep 24, 2012 11:36 am

I would guess it's an in-joke, an idea thrown around but L-space was funnier without it. I like Mongo's version though :)
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Re: what's Schrödinger's paperback?

Postby AgProv » Thu Nov 15, 2012 7:59 pm

It's the one that you could have sworn was around here a moment ago,the one that goes missing at exactly the moment when you need to refer to it.
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Re: what's Schrödinger's paperback?

Postby Hunter » Wed Feb 26, 2014 11:59 pm

Thank you all for your answers, this last post helped a lot with my translating. Oh, by the way mine is going to be the first translation of the book (Guards! Guards!) in Farsi (Iran). I just started today and was wondering what was he referring to. I knew he had something to do with Schrodinger's Quantum Mechanics and his idea of L-Space had the same thing to do with Schrodinger's K-Space theory. But I just didn't quiet understand aforementioned gesture, but dear AgProv's comment cleared it all. Because in the text after he says, "too bad we never used Schrodinger's Paperback", he goes on saying, "This i's where the dragons went."
Spoiler: show
And now it makes perfect sense. Because later on in the novel the dragons suddenly reappear and disappear when called upon.

Anyway, thanks a lot AgProv, and noelu for making the topic so I could find this amazing site.
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