Sunday, December 19, 2010

Isn't Science Wonderful, or, How I Joined The 21st Century

I'm a confirmed friend of General Ned Ludd, but every so often something comes along that is a real eye opener and a great use of technology-at present that is a Kindle e-book reader my lovely wife gifted me with recently.
I had resisted it for all the usual well thought out reasons, but a couple of tools and some information changed my mind about it.

First of all there is the idea that the Kindle can carry in excess of 3,000 books within-that's right, folks, an entire moderately sized library in a platform the size of a memo book.

But what really made it for me was a program called Calibre, which allows you to manage your electronic book forays and translate them into the format of your choice, being as Kindle isn't the only game in town.

Amazon thoughtfully provides a page with links to several open source free book repositories, and they do not mention google books which also maintains a large collection of public domain works.

And that's where the interest started, because if something's in the public domain it's free for public use.

At present I have sampled and downloaded the collected works of Ambrose Bierce, a manual for the Liberty V-12 aero engine, Across America By Motorcycle, written by a British army officer in 1921, Three Years in the Confederate Horse Artillery by George Neese (1911), Mr. Dooley's Philosophy by Finley Peter Dunne, The Long Arm of Lee-A History of the Artillery of the Army of Northern Virginia by Jennings Wise (1913), The Long Road to Baghdad by Edmund Candler (1919), a biography of Glenn Curtiss, the aviation pioneer and motorcycle racer deluxe, and a raft of other stuff.

This is a rare opportunity to build the library of your dreams.


At 7:08 AM, Blogger mr coffee said...

it is a brave new world my friend.. any SAM's schematics?

At 5:54 AM, Anonymous Robert Luedeman said...

It IS a brave new world, and that's not all good. Judy and I were watching TV the other night, a commercial for the Wii system came up, we looked at it and each other and said "Fahrenheit 451."

The Sams photofacts are still under copyright-at least until we figure out how to make everything run on algae and swamp gas. However, I do have a 1952 index and the first three hundred folders so I could probably find somethin if it's in there and the need is great.


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