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  • Arabic books

    Fri, 12 Dec 2008 06:24

    Nice article in the Guardian in which Maya Jaggi asks: Western books are flooding the Middle East, but is Arabic literature travelling the other way?
    Although Arab culture, from Baghdad to Toledo, led the world in the art of translation in the 8th and 9th centuries, transmitting ancient Greek and Latin texts that helped fuel Europe's renaissance, the UN estimates that the entire number of books translated into Arabic in the past 1,000 years is the same as that now rendered into Spanish in a single year ... [more importantly] how much Arabic literature is flowing the other way?
  • The Kindle

    Fri, 12 Dec 2008 06:24

    Today, Amazon launch their e-book reader, the Amazon Kindle, which they hope will do much better than the Sony Reader and become the "iPod" of e-book readers. That is, Amazon hope the Kindle will
  • Turning the Pages

    Fri, 12 Dec 2008 06:24

    Via Booksurfer, news that ...
    the British Library has announced the winners of its competition to make "spectacular" and unusual treasures from public libraries more widely available via the web, through its online digitisation project Turning the Pages 2.0 virtual texts. Now alongside virtual copies of William Blake's notebook, the Lindesfarne Gospels, and the manuscript of Jane Austen's History of England, it will be possible to read extracts from the Dorset Federation of Women's Institutes beautifully illustrated War Record Book 1939-1945 and the Arbuthnott Manuscrits - a spectacular illuminated missal containing a "blood-curdling rite of excommunication".
    Or click for further details on 24 Hour Museum
  • Nice article from the Chronicle Review (via that very useful Books Inq blog):
    If Shakespeare had had a hard drive, if the plays had been written with a word processor on a computer that had somehow survived, we still might not know anything definitive about Shakespeare's original or final intentions — these are human, not technological, questions — but we might be able to know some rather different things. We might be able to know, for example, the precise date on which he began composing Hamlet indeed the precise minute and hour, time-stamped to the second. We would be able to know how long he had spent working on it, or at least how long the file containing the play had remained open on his desktop. We would very likely have access to multiple versions and states of the file, and if Shakespeare had "track changes" turned on while he wrote, we would be able to follow the composition of a soliloquy keystroke by keystroke, each revision also date- and time-stamped to the second. We might discover the play had originally been called GreatDane.doc instead of Hamlet.doc. We might also be able to know what else he had been working on that same day, or what Internet content he had browsed the night before (since we'll assume Shakespeare had Web access too). While he was online, he might have updated his blog or tagged some images in his Flickr account, or perhaps edited a Wikipedia entry or two. He might even have spent some time interacting with others by performing with an avatar in Second Life, an online place where all the world is truly a shared virtual stage.
  • The bookness of books

    Fri, 12 Dec 2008 06:24

    There is always interesting stuff over on if:book ("A Project of The Institute for the Future of the Book"), which is one of the best blogs around for my money. Yesterday, they
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