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Smell and Knowledge

Giles: Truthfully, I’m even less anxious to be around computers than I used to be

Ms. Calendar: Well, it was your book that started all the trouble, not a computer. Honestly, what is it about them that bothers you so much?

Giles: The smell.

Ms. Calendar: Computer’s don’t smell, Rupert.

Giles: I know! Smell is the most powerful trigger to the memory there is. A certain flower or a, a whiff of smoke can bring up experiences… long forgotten. Books smell. Musty and, and, and, and rich. The knowledge gained from a computer, is, uh, it… it has no, no texture, no, no context. It’s, it’s there and then it’s gone. If it’s to last, then, then the getting of knowledge should be, uh, tangible, it should be, um… smelly.

Ms. Calendar: Well! You really are an old-fashioned boy, aren’t you?

Giles: Well, I-I don’t dangle a corkscrew from my ear.

Ms. Calendar: That’s not where I dangle it.

—- Buffy the Vampire Slayer, I Robot You Jane

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