Acme Book News
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Still don't have a DVD player?
Replacement for DVD unveiled by Barry Fox
History of the Book
The world's Big Nine electronics companies have swallowed corporate pride and agreed on a single standard and name - Blu-Ray - for the next generation video and computer optical disc. Although good for the consumer, they are putting the future of their fledgling recordable DVD systems in jeopardy.
Blu-Ray is backed by Hitachi, LG, Matsushita (Panasonic), Pioneer, Philips, Samsung, Sharp, Sony and Thomson. Only Toshiba, the main inventor of DVD, and JVC, which has a vested interest in VHS, are missing.
The new format will use a blue laser for recording and playback. A single-sided 12 centimetre Blu-Ray disc stores 27GB of computer data, records 13 hours of broadcast TV or holds 2 hours of High Definition video.
Prototypes already exist, and have been demonstrated by Philips, Sony and Panasonic. Licensing for manufacture begins within a couple of months and the first Blu-Ray recorders could go on sale next year. [read more]
Soviet Children's Picture Books from the Twenties and Thirties
Future of the History of the Book
The IISH houses a rich collection of manuscripts, books and pamphlets documenting the social and political history of Russia and the Soviet Union. It is also home to a fine collection of Russian children's picture books from the 1920s and 1930s, which is presented here.
The collection numbers around 375 books. Subjects vary from friendly animal stories and everyday events in a child's life to educational texts and political themes such as Lenin, the Soviets and May Day celebrations. Cars, trains and airplanes often appear in the stories. Among the authors and illustrators many famous names can be found. In this collection there are texts by Vladimir Maiakovskii, Kornei Khukovskii, Samuil Marshak and Daniil Kharms. [read more]
Don't miss the cover designs.
(link via librarian.net)
Chaucer edition goes online
What the heck?
A rare first edition of Geoffrey Chaucer's The Canterbury Tales, believed to be the first book ever printed in England, is to be published on the internet.
The British Library has agreed to digitise the volume, worth £4.6m, so scholars and the public can access it.
The book was first published 500 years ago by the man considered the father of the printing press in England, William Caxton.
A team from Keio University in Tokyo, the project's sponsor, are photographing the work into 1,300 high-definition images which will then be put on the web. [read more]
UNC gets $530,000 to create 3-D, digital rare book library
The Lone Star State
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has received a $530,000 grant from E.S.P. Das Educational Foundation, a private organization in New York City, to produce a three-dimensional, digital rare book library.
UNCís School of Information and Library Science and academic libraries and ibiblio.org., a free library on the World Wide Web that is based at UNC, will use the funding to introduce the experience of viewing a book in three dimensions to the digital form. [read more]
All I have to say is "weird".
(link via library_geek)
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High Court Hears Coypright Case
In a case initiated by an Internet publisher, the Supreme Court agreed Tuesday to review whether Congress has exercised too much authority in copyright protection. The outcome could affect the availability of books, music and movies online.
The nonprofit publisher and other plaintiffs argue that Congress sided too heavily with writers and other creators when it passed a law in 1998 retroactively extending copyright terms by 20 years. [read more]
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March Cites & Insights: Crawford at Large
February D-Lib Magazine
From Vol. 6 No. 1 of RLG DigiNews, "We don't know the first thing about digitization:" Assessing the Need for Digitization Training in Illinois by Trevor Jones and Beth Sandore
Ask non-specialists what it takes to complete a digital imaging project, and responses will range from a desire to "slap it on a scanner and go" to uncomprehending glassy-eyed stares. The reality lies somewhere between these two extremes, but it is apparent that many cultural heritage professionals are confused by the digitization process. Most are interested in digitizing some part of their collections, but often possess only a vague idea of how to begin. Although great advances have been made in the development of standards and best practices for digitization, these principles have yet to filter down to the majority of non-specialists. In Illinois, as in many states, there is such pressure to "get materials on the Web" that digitization projects are often hastily planned and poorly executed. [read more]