Librarian, policewoman, architect? If you ruled the world, what would you want Barbie to be? For a solution to this interesting issue, Nic George of Siddell Gibson directs us all to www. barbie.
asp. I had to persist a bit to get onto the site - keep trying when you get those 'not found'messages.But maybe don't bother because it is a pretty crap site and Nic George says that, with 93 per cent of the vote, Barbie the Architect is a certain winner.You might pay a silent tribute to the hard work of the marketing departments of all those architecture institutes around the world. Or maybe architecture is just naturally girlie.
Before you all write in complaining, let me divert you to our own website, at www. ajplus. co. uk. Yes, yes, I know AJ pays my fee for this column, but since the website has recently become a subscription number it seems a fair target.Whatever reservations I have about paying for sites, this is a comprehensive site which wipes its few rivals effortlessly off the map. My favourite is Astragal's frequently choleric and always acerbic page Mediawatch, a rundown of the Sunday papers'takes on architecture-related subjects. There's Paul Hyett's agony aunt column on practice and ethics issues; AJ Specification, with its growing image bank of recent architecture and the materials of construction; and masses of other material as well - news, chatrooms, sorry, forums, a big product directory, an opinion poll, recruitment ads - that sort of thing. It is mostly easy to access and navigate and the quality of content is, naturally, high. I guess what we are seeing here is an early example of the next phase of subscription magazine publishing, in which printed and electronic information sit comfortably side by side doing what each, individually, does best. In some ways the combination of AJ and AJ Plus is an update of the old post-war AJ with its information library of books and its mission to inform as well as entertain.But I would say that, wouldn't I?