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    • CommentAuthorKosmopolit
    • CommentTimeJun 27th 2008
    While I was half-asleep in bed this morning I was thinking about webcomics and it occurred to me that the medium could be used for educational and journalistic purposes - and I couldn't think of anyone who's doing this.

    Imagine one of Larry Gonick's Cartoon Histories with the footnotes imbedded as hyperlinks to the original sources and the capacity to jump between pages and sections.

    Or imagine Jim Ottaviani's science books with links to footage of the various experiments.

    Or Joe Sacco's Palestine with reference etc - and a linked forum to discuss the issues the book raises.

    Or how about foreign language comics for language students similar to the bilingual comics Kodansha publishes in Japan? You could hot-link new vocabulary as it first appears; provide further examples of usage. For Japanese you could even have little pop-ups showing how the Kanji are drawn including the stroke order and the radicals.

    Is this a dumb idea?

    Am I profoundly ignorant and missing a mass of already-existing examples?
    • CommentTimeJul 1st 2008
    Mine might count. It's as historically accurate as I can make it, though I had to take a few liberties because there were a few instances where entire characters (including their names) were lost to antiquity. I've fact-checked it with Tom Standage and he seemed to give the thumbs-up, so that's a good sign.

    Eric Shanower's stuff must surely count; he had a sample comic on the Image site a while ago, but I don't know if it's still up.

    Kate Beaton does some hysterically funny historically accurate comics, as does Bryant Paul Johnston.

    Though they're technically historical fiction, I think there's a lot of atmospheric and cultural learning to be gained from the likes of Dylan Meconis' Family Man and Klio's SPQR Blues.
    • CommentTimeJul 2nd 2008
    xkcd occasionally has real science, but I guess that doesn't count. :)

    Seriously though, this is an interesting topic. I'd love to see more stuff like this - using a widely accessible and perhaps more importantly known and non-threatening format to present information and ideas. My dad talks a lot about old educational comics he read as a kid, and how much he liked them, though I can't off-hand remember what they were about. He also had Winnie the Pooh in Latin though, so he was always a geek. I come by it honestly, seriously.

    I haven't read a lot of non-fiction comics, web or otherwise. I'll check out the links above, thanks!
    • CommentAuthorKosmopolit
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2008
    Thanks to everyone who replied to this.
  1.  (2750.5)
    We're reformatting Hannibal goes to Rome to be more of a hyper-comic, so that you can click on one panel and go to a tangential story. That's going to take awhile, but Mauro is drawing part 2 of the main spine now, and we'll spin off as we go along.