The Open Library

openlibrary1a.jpgThe Open Content Alliance’s Internet Archive, which plans to scan in over 150,000 books next year, has set up a website where people can preview a few books: The Open Library. The format is quite striking, providing a great readable image of the actual book pages in the original.

The Open Content Alliance is composed of a group of university libraries, nonprofits, as well as companies such as Microsoft (MSN Search) and Yahoo!. According to the website:

The Open Library website was created by the Internet Archive to demonstrate a way that books can be represented online. . . .

Books are scanned and then offered in an easy-to-use interface for free reading online. If they’re in the public domain, the books can be downloaded, shared and printed for free. They can also be printed for a nominal fee by a third party, who will bind and mail the book to you. The books are always FREE to read at the Open Library website.

It doesn’t capture the smell and feel of an old book, but visually, it’s wonderful to peruse the pages.

Hat tip: BoingBoing

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