Monday, March 10, 2008

HP BookPrep

Via ReadWriteWeb, I cam across HP BookPrep, a prototype print-on-demand service for, and this is really a quote, "every book ever published." The work from page images and process them through their own process into PDF "eMasters" for printing. It's an interesting prototype.

The pilot collection is Foodsville, a food and cooking community site. Members can read and purchase cookbooks at the site's free library, where books can be discovered by keyword, by author, or by browsing through tags. Of course, they're not actually "free" -- the print-on-demand costs ranged from $7 to $32 when I browsed through the 141 titles currently available. You don't have to buy the books -- you can read them online. I browsed through Lafcadio Hearn's La Cuisine Creole and found it readable. (I love the recipe title "Delicate Rusks for Convalescents" on page 235)

I'm a fan of Lafcadio Hearn, so I checked Amazon, and found that the same POD version is available for $10.26 versus $13.96 on Foodsville, both listed as marked down from $19.95 There is what looks to be a different POD version available from Amazon as well -- also a facsimile of the 1885 edition -- for $21.24. I'm not sure which I'd choose.

It does not say where they're getting the page images from. I'd really like to know that.

1 comment:

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