Friday, June 30, 2006

Dr. Shroud - June 30, 2006

Duplication knew little about the old photo booths of train stations and Woolworths. Young Shroud came upon one, and looked into the glass.

“Updike” is a search term on the “Uptick.” He’s hit the bloggers where it hurts – in their sense of being protected from outsiders. Making fun of their foibles and standing up for the old corner bookstore, Updike is a perfect target for counter salvo, and he could care less, though no less than the bloggers care for him and his set. See previous post.

You see, Wired’s Kevin Kelly wrote a piece. Kelly wrote “Scan this Book” in the NYTimes Sunday magazine. And, graphically presented as it was with cold ugly darkly lit and pretty decrepit books, dictionaries and thesauri, the really putrid tomes, it was an imposing screed.

Take as Kelly’s premise: that the era published books [copies] will end if for the only reason that we now are in the era of digital search technology.

That’s it! The new unimpeachable era of Scan this Book.

One may ask: What is the point of books if you are near sited and your glasses are broken, and there has just been a nuclear war? The universal library is pointless quest waiting for a conflagration. But I digress.

Kelly torted and Updike retorted. Splash.

Let’s exercise fair use and pick a few selections from Kelly. He zeros in on ‘hourly workers’ scanning the great books somewhere out there. Yes, a few crews have been pursuing this digitization of the classics and less than classics and it has gained steam with the Google Scan the Great Books in the Swell Libraries project. [what do people in the libraries thing about this?]

“They are assembling the universal library page by page.” [Ask them what they are doing: They are scanning books] The dream, he admits, is an old one.

Then he goes on to embellish, extend, and, finally, imbibe it. What is the dream?

It is the long-gone-era of the library of Alexandria, thought to hold pretty much, but not all, of the world’s literally encrypted knowledge, built in 300 B.C., and, later, burned, with tons of knowledge lost. Many stark hours we all have wondered what was lost.

But what happens if someone takes the Universal library index home for the weekend to do some work? And thieves grab it along with engagement rings, walkmans, and Krugerands? Or the remote workers shoots off fireworks in the house?

-tobecontined-

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