Steampunk Primary Sources II

More PDFs (and sometimes epubs) of original Victorian and Edwardian books of interest to Steampunks. See part one here, and how these books were found here.

Automata (1893)

http://www.archive.org/details/automataoldandn00unkngoog

Automobiles (1900)

http://www.archive.org/details/horselessvehicle00hiscrich

Babbage On The Difference Engine (1864)

http://books.google.com/books?id=Fa1JAAAAMAAJ

Engineering (1860)

http://books.google.com/books?id=rkkOAAAAYAAJ

Factories (1844)

http://books.google.com/books?id=dXs4AAAAMAAJ

The Jacquard Loom (1895)

http://www.archive.org/details/jacquardweaving00bellgoog

Lovelace On The Difference Engine (1853)

http://www.archive.org/details/scientificmemoir03memo

(also http://www.fourmilab.ch/babbage/sketch.html)

Mechanisms (1868)

http://books.google.com/books?id=vOhIAAAAMAAJ

Shipbuilding (1869)

http://www.archive.org/details/handbookironshi00smitgoog

Steampunk Primary Sources From Google Books And archive.org

Here is a list of PDFs of books from the Victorian (and Edwardian) era that Steampunks can take ideas and illustrations from. There are many more that can be found, see my post on how to search to help you find them. Let me know in the comments if you find anything good!

Airships (1909)

http://www.archive.org/details/airshipalmanacli00browiala

Aircraft (1910)

http://www.archive.org/details/flyingmachinesc00jackgoog

The Aether (1886)

http://www.archive.org/details/luminiferousthe00woodgoog

Clockwork (1859)

http://books.google.com/books?id=9QnSAAAAMAAJ

Etiquette (1860s?)

http://www.archive.org/details/routledgesmanual00londiala

The Great Exhibition (1851)

http://books.google.com/books?id=lLgXAAAAYAAJ

The Magic Lantern (1888)

http://www.archive.org/details/bookoflanternbei00hepwrich

Mediumship (1891)

http://www.archive.org/details/experimentalspi00kardgoog

The Phonograph (1879)

http://www.archive.org/details/telephonemicrop00moncgoog

Steam Engineering (1867)

http://books.google.com/books?id=4Y5sBNn5NwAC

Steam Engines (1857)

http://books.google.com/books?id=w2UpAAAAYAAJ

Spirit Photography (1894)

http://www.archive.org/details/veilliftedmoder00taylgoog

The Telegraph (1860)

http://books.google.com/books?id=NK83AAAAMAAJ

The Telephone (1889)

http://www.archive.org/details/telephone01maiegoog

Theosophy (1891)

http://www.archive.org/details/isisunveiledama02blavgoog

The Typewriter (1890)

http://www.archive.org/details/howtobecomeexpe00barngoog

HOWTO Search For Public Domain ebooks Using Google Books and archive.org

If you are looking for electronic versions of old public domain books and journals you can get good results by using Google Books and archive.org together.

Start with Google Books, which has more metadata and more search options than archive.org. Despite much-publicised metadata failures on some books, most books have useful date, author and title information, and many can be searched inside. I’ve found that the useful search constraints are date (for example 1850 to 1900 when searching for Victoriana) and then one or more of author, title, exact phrase or subject keyword.

Always use the advanced search interface –

http://books.google.com/advanced_book_search

Don’t limit the search to “Full Books Only” unless you are searching specifically for epub format ebooks. Epub is a great way of getting a structured copy of a book that you can read on a mobile device, copy and paste from and translate to other formats, but many more books are availabe as PDFs. The only problem with PDF versions of books is that Google Books doesn’t provide downloads for all of them.

Once you’ve found the title of a book you want but that Google doesn’t provide a PDF download for, search for that title on archive.org. It will almost always be there but you may have to select the correct edition, or choose between different versions from different libraries or from projects other than Google Books. Go to the book’s page and don’t click on “Download PDF” which sends you back to Google, who don’t have it. Instead click on the link to “All Files”, then download the PDF (or the DJVU, or the text extracted from the DJVU) from there.

There’s nothing to stop you searching archive.org for authors, title words of keywords as well. archove.org is used by projects other than Google Books. gutenberg.org has the texts of many old books as well, and provides html and epub versions of illustrated books as well. But as a new resource with some rough edges, Google Books is a useful new research resource for historical sources.

Explor

A while ago I made a version of the old computer art language Mini-Explor. It’s a library or domain specific language in Fortran. I’ve tidied the code up a little and added it to my source repository here –

http://robmyers.wpengine.com/git/?p=explor.git;a=summary

You can get it using git –

git clone https://robmyers.wpengine.com/git/explor.git

For more information on Explor, see –

http://portal.acm.org/citation.cfm?id=807020

http://portal.acm.org/citation.cfm?id=988052