Digital Library Roundup

by David Sklar

Ambitious plans are in the works for a vast digital library in Alexandria. Read all about it in the New York Times:


    Searching the unstructured, unedited web via Google or has its virtues. I've solved plenty of "why doesn't this compile" problems by pasting error messages into Google's search box.

    Many searches, however, require slogging through piles of nonsense. If I'm looking for accurate historical or political information, I'm always worried if I find a page that seems to be helpful but is just written by some random freelance interested person. Maybe it's accurate or maybe the author is well known on soc.culture.freedonia as a notorious partisan of a fringe anti-Freedonian militant sect.

    Digital information distribution projects that involve editors or librarians are interesting combinations of the reach of the web with the discerning filter of a human. Sure, wikis and faq-o-matics have their place, but there are times when I want to be able to trust and verify the sources of information.

    So what's out there that fills this role in various topic areas? There's a good source for O'Reilly books, but using the Internet to learn about the Internet are the baby steps of this kind of research. Here's a few things I've found:

    • JSTOR provides online access to many scholarly journals.
    • arXiv provides free online access to current physics, math, and CS research
    • The New York Public Library has about 30,000 searchable digital images online with plans for another 570,000 in the next few years

    What are your favorite structured/edited online databases?


    2003-03-05 01:33:35
    some common resources





    tech(file formats):



    2003-03-06 11:38:59
    invisible web
    ...shouldn't there be an O'Reilly book on this by now? ;>

    A favorite resource for the deep web is a companion site for Sherman and Price's book, The Invisible Web.

    2003-03-08 08:12:28
    Million Book Project

    The Library:

    2003-03-08 08:16:10
    Project Gutenberg

    Project Gutenberg is the brainchild of Michael Hart, who in 1971 decided that it would be a really good idea if lots of famous and important texts were freely available to everyone in the world. Since then, he has been joined by hundreds of volunteers who share his vision.
    Now, more than thirty years later, Project Gutenberg has the following figures (as of November 8th 2002): 1975 New eBooks produced in 2002 (they were 1240 in 2001) for a total of 6267 Total Project Gutenberg eBooks.

    2003-03-08 08:29:44
    The Internet Archive - Wayback Machine
    The Internet Archive is building a digital library of Internet sites and other cultural artifacts in digital form. Like a paper library, we provide free access to researchers, historians, scholars, and the general public.

    2005-02-03 17:01:33
    Would you consider a different approach to passing the Turing Test?
    Would you consider this? Passing the Test? For over ten years, I have been working on a method of semantic interpretation that applies in any situation. Using this method, I believe that a software program can pass the Turing Test. The book, "How to Design a Universal Artificial Intelligence," is currently online, in its entirety, and I am requesting your review of this work. This is it; this is real; this is a working counterpart program.