Another iPad post
Reader's indigestion

Artistic license


 Frequent contributor Bernard L. pointed me to this National Geographic "infographics". This surely belongs to the Art section of the infographics gallery, which I discussed in the "Whither Infographics" post.  This fact is acknowledged by the editors who labeled this "Art: Fish Pharm".

It's a very pretty picture. And I'm cool to turn a blind eye to:

  • the uneven sizes of the pills
  • the dislocated, non-contiguous areas (diphenhydramine)
  • the dual-colored area (green-yellow), especially as the same green represented a different pill
  • the water bubbles treated as part of the fish

but I'm still debating:

Is it an artistic license taken too far to imply that pharma chemicals have completely stuffed the fish (so much as to also infect the exhaled bubbles) when the text actually said the fish contained "traces of pharmaceuticals and toiletries"?

The footnote apologizes for the percentages not adding up to 100 percent, but 100 percent of what?


And by the way, this is the first time I have seen the word "pharmaceutical" used as a noun to represent medicines manufactured by pharmaceutical companies. As a noun, I understand "pharmaceutical" to mean a company that designs and makes medicines.


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Jeff Weir

Enough pills there to send me to the funny pharm.


I have some interpretive differences to what you wrote.

The green and green/yellow pills represent the same thing, not different. The white fin pills also appear to represent this same drug. It is not a case of one color and two meanings, but rather 3 colors and one meaning.

Also, the water surface is unlabeled.


Pharmaceutical has greek roots and its use in this context would be appropriate in greek (φάρμακο[pharmaco] = medicine).


Fish don't breathe air.


Pharmaceuticals, like hallucinogenics.

Glen Turpin

Used as a noun, "pharmaceutical" only refers to drugs, not companies.

1.pertaining to pharmacy or pharmacists.
2.a pharmaceutical preparation or product.

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