[bksvol-discuss] Re: book requests

  • From: "Bob" <rwiley@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <bksvol-discuss@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Thu, 22 Nov 2007 05:26:06 -0600

Cindy, the project Gutenberg books are, for the most part, text files.

The situation gets rather complicated, at least it is complicated to simple-minded me. I am making a lot of assumptions in the following paragraph, and anyone who has different ideas or information, please weigh in.

Bookshare converts its books into daisy and Braille formats, not because these are the only formats a blind person can read, but because they are formats that the general sighted community can't read. This is because of the requirement in the copyright law that specifies that a book must be in a specialized format, and Braille and Daisy meet this requirement, whereas other formats such as .txt and .rtf files do not.

Project Gutenberg takes a different approach. Their books are books that have no copyright, and, therefore, do not need to meet the "specialized format" regulation.

Actually, most blind people convert books from bookshare into a useable format, either with a software product such as Kurzweil and openbook, or (heaven forbid) the VictorSoftprogram bookshare provides, or people read the books directly using a device or computer with a Braille display. The same conversions can easily be made on a .txt file.

The bottom line is that people who can read bookshare books can also read books from Gutenberg.

Now, aren't you sorry you asked? Next time ask me what time it is, and I'll probably tell you how to build a watch, <smile>.

Bob

----- Original Message ----- From: "Grandma Cindy" <popularplace@xxxxxxxxx>
To: <bksvol-discuss@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Wednesday, November 21, 2007 10:44 PM
Subject: [bksvol-discuss] Re: book requests


Bob, I'm curious. People keep mentioning Project
Gutenberg here as a source for books and so we
shouldn't duplicate their efforts. Can they be
downloaded in Braille or Daisy, or is it easy to
convert them to those formats once they're downloaded?

G.Cindy

--- Bob <rwiley@xxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

I agree with your general sentaments Jill, but not
in this instance.

If this book is rated fair then we should make an
effort to improve
bookshare's service. Maybe it should be flagged as a
bso book.

If nls has the book in Braille, then I agree there
is no need for us to
re-invent the wheel. However, if the book is only
available in recorded
format, then I think some of our patrons who might
be deaf/blind could get
the benefit of our reproducing the book.

I especially disagree with scanning and validating
books that are in the
public domain--unless they aren't available
elsewhere. Gutenberg has done an
excellent job of making uncopyrighted books
available, so why should we
waste our time and effort doing the same thing.

Now, I'll crawl back into my cave and take off my
Golem mask.

Bob

----- Original Message ----- From: "Jill O'Connell" <jillocon@xxxxxxxxxx>
To: <bksvol-discuss@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Wednesday, November 21, 2007 12:26 PM
Subject: [bksvol-discuss] book requests


>I wish there were some way to respond to the people
requesting books. I am
>particularly referring to the request for Hawaii by
James Michener. This
>book is already available on Bookshare although it
is rated good. It is
>also available from NLS on casette and a braille
edition is in process. I
>know some of the rest of you on this list are
willing to make copies for
>Bookshare when books are available through NLS in
both braille and recorded
>form but I am not. After all, it isn't as though we
have to check them out
>so others can't get them.  Jill
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