Day: June 14, 2006

When something so nerdy feels right . . .

It’s a very good thing that I enjoy my job so much or I would be worried about myself right now. Having stumbled onto the Bookepxocast website8 earlier today I have spent a considerable portion of the day working with earplugs in! Personally, Michael Hyatt’s 7 reasons to blog was the smoothest to listen to but the best by far was “BEA #5 – Don Tapscott on Embracing New Media and Web 2.0.”

I am listening to the recording of Carly Fiorina, one of my favourite current and former corporate executives (and not just because she studied Medieval History and philosophy), as I type!

Go Listen if you care about books, publishing or just smart people speculating!

8Book Expo America

Google Book Search shows its power…and Shakespeare’s

Google Book Search has launched a landing page for the complete works of Shakespeare. You can find it here. As Google Blogoscoped says, it doesn’t quite show its full potential to Europeans but you can certainly see the idea.

On some of the rare books that Google enables me to page through, like Love’s Labor’s Lost, the scan quality is good for research but not really great for online reading.

Thanks to Michael Arrington Marshall Kirkpatrick over at techcrunch for highlighting this. He sees it as a smart move (I detect a tone of cynicism):

What better use could there be for Google Book Search? What could better improve the PR of the controversial opt-out system for in-copyright books that Google has set up?

It certainly strikes me a display of the immense power of Google Book Search. It may seem like an offering that will work only for those whose works are famous or whose names are famous. But consider this; a landing page for Dan Brown, Jeffery Archer or John Grisham where you can buy online access to the text if the publisher so agrees and links to buy hardcopies. You search for something and the page gets served directly into your results, you visit, you explore, you buy.

What is more, consider this from the unknown writer’s perspective. A page like this would be exceptionally valuable. Worth a couple of hundred a year if Google were willing to allow you to set up one featuring your titles and reachable through a Google and a Google Book Search?

You might wonder how well others do this online. Project Gutenberg offers a selection of Shakespears works but with not nearly as much attention or resources as Google can provide.