Gutenberg CD To Plucker Perl Script

<pre>#!/usr/bin/perl# Copyright (c) 2009 Rob Myers <[email protected]># Licenced under the GPL version 3 or, at your option, any later version.# Install gut (gutenberg to html converter) into your PATH.# Download the project Gutenberg CD image, decompress it,# add this file to the directory contaning the etext directories and run it.use strict;use warnings;use File::Basename;use Cwd;sub html_name{my $filename = shift @_;$filename =~ s/(.*).txt/$1.html/;$filename;}sub absolute_path{my $file = shift @_;”file://” . Cwd::cwd() . “/” . $file;}sub html_to_pdb{my $file = shift @_;my $absolute_file = absolute_path ($file);my $file_root = basename ($file);system (“plucker-build  –zlib-compression –stayonhost –bpp=8 -p./plucker -f $file_root $absolute_file”);}sub txt_to_html{my $filename = shift @_;my $htmlname = html_name ($filename);`cat $filename | gut > $htmlname`;}sub process_files{my @txt_files = `ls ./etext*/*.txt`;foreach my $file (@txt_files){chomp ($file);# Don’t convert files that have an html versionmy $htmlfile = $file;$htmlfile =~ s/(.*).txt/$1h.htm\*/;if (! -f $htmlfile){txt_to_html ($file);}}my @html_files = `ls etext*/*.html etext*/*.htm`;foreach my $file (@html_files){chomp ($file);html_to_pdb ($file);}}mkdir (“./plucker”);process_files ();</pre>

ebooks

I read a persuasive article about the past and future of ebooks yesterday and decided to give ebooks a try. Not “another try”, a try. I have text and PDF versions of some textbooks that provide them and I find those useful for search, but apart from confirming that I wanted to buy the dead tree version of “Little Brother” I’ve never really tried reading fiction in ebook form.I dug out an ancient Palm PDA, installed the free software Plucker ebook reader onto it, downloaded some Cory Doctorow and Charles Stross then grabbed some classics from Project Gutenberg all in Plucker Format. A brief learning curve later I managed to get an offline version of 2000 pages from Wikipedia onto the memory stick as well.The breakthrough for me was finding the auto scroll feature. Trying to keep up with text as it crawls by like a perspective corrected Star Wars opening sequence may not sound like the most relaxing way of reading, but you can adjust the speed and I soon warmed to it.So I’ve started reading a Charles Stross story, some Sherlock Holmes and the occasional Wikipedia article. I wish more books I have in hardback were available in Plucker’s DRM-free pdb format, but the wise and the classic are more than enough for now.I’m wary of copyright differences for the UK with some of Project Gutenberg’s ebooks (notably Ulysses won’t be out of copyright here for another three years, and H.G. Wells’s work will be in copyright here for some time to come), but as long as you check the dates it’s easy enough to manage. And contemporary Creative Commons licences remove any need for wariness of the books they cover.It took me less than an evening to set up and warm to ebooks with Free Software and Free Culture. Ignore dedicated ebook readers and try ebooks on any handheld devices you may already have. There are gigabytes of classic and contemporary literature that you can get and read for free and freely, and you may discover a writer you can support financially offline.

Wikipedia Loves Art V&A Launch

The launch of Wikipedia Loves Art At The V&A on Sunday was well attended and great fun. I met lots of cool Wikipedians and I saw several families among the groups using a good excuse to get their kids to the museum.Wikimedia produced flyers explaining what and how to photograph and upload, and they organized the event online.The V&A provided staff, a room, refreshments, laptops and net connections. The only, minor, criticisms I’d have of the event would be that the base room wasn’t signposted well enough and that the final details weren’t publicised far enough ahead online.I had trouble working out how to use my camera to photograph brightly lit objects behind glass in dark rooms, but I did get some usable photographs. I should have some images of sculptures, fabric patterns, and bone carvings of Japanese gods to add. It’s a different kind of photography from everyday digital snapshots. A workshop, clinic, hands-on tutorial or dry run would help get the best results for events like this.It is worth having more than one person in a group photographing each object. At first I thought this would be reduplication of effort, but different cameras and different photographers produce better or worse pictures of the same object. So it can take more than one or two photographs of the same object to make sure that there is a single good one.Photographs from the event are showing up in the project’s Flickr group, and if you haven’t had a chance to get to the V&A (or your local participating museum) yet the project is running for all of this month. It’s a great demonstration of the value of access to museum collections and of social organisation, and fun to be involved in as well.

furny — More Mature Escapades in Hi-Fi | Exploring Freedom

>furny — More Mature Escapades in Hi-FiCan now be purchased from the FooCorp download store in either MP3 or Ogg Vorbis.via furny — More Mature Escapades in Hi-Fi | Exploring Freedom.

Everything Seems To Be In Order

I’ve changed hosts again and swapped this weblog back to WordPress because Matt said to.

Comments have been kept and the archives should be the same as before.

Hopefully a nippier system will encourage me to post more.

In Progress…

dscf0106

Wikipedia Loves Art

Wikipedia Loves Art at the V&A launches in the main entrance at 1pm today.

Come along if you can make it.