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Announcements

Launching Gutenberg Radio - Public Domain Audiobooks 206

tgbg writes "We are proud to announce the launch of "Gutenberg Radio". On these broadcast channels, you can hear the Gutenberg Library and anything else the Gutenberg family cares to share with its public."
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Launching Gutenberg Radio - Public Domain Audiobooks

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  • by Anonymous Coward
    They're using Microsoft Sam to read the books.
  • Hmm... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by BJH ( 11355 ) on Sunday April 20, 2003 @09:22PM (#5770992)
    A truly brilliant idea. Now if only we didn't have to wait indefinitely for copyrighted works from after the 1920s or so to be released into the public domain...
    • Re:Hmm... (Score:5, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 20, 2003 @09:44PM (#5771078)
      Or instead of retroactively extending copyright by 10 years every 10 years, Congress could be direct and say "before 1928 it's public domain, after 1928 it's copyrighted". Why 1928? [Congress answering with a straight face]: "Because that's when Mickey Mouse was born".
      • Re:Hmm... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by GimmeFuel ( 589906 ) on Sunday April 20, 2003 @11:58PM (#5771522) Homepage
        Even more likely, soon Congress will just announce "If you own a company that begins with D and ends in isney, you are hereby granted full license and copyright to every creative work ever made in perpetuity throughout the universe. If you own a non-Disney company, see your local representative for pricing information on Congresswhores of your own. If you a one of those human things, but not a corporation, please remember to vote. Democracy can't work without you."
        • Re:Hmm... (Score:4, Funny)

          by Banjonardo ( 98327 ) on Monday April 21, 2003 @01:48AM (#5771826) Homepage
          If you own a company that begins with D and ends in isney

          Immediately after, a bunch of hackers with nothing to do open doobisney, dumbisney, and such companies.

          • ...And quickly get sued for trademark infringement. The smart ones, the ones who opened Davidson's Wiggly Whizney, which sounds very little like "Disney", then start trumpeting all over the place that their copyright terms are forever, and pointing out how stupid it is of the legal system to do this. They will be promptly ignored.
      • Re:Hmm... (Score:2, Funny)

        by Anonymous Coward
        While it would be quite pathetic to admit the true intention behind the seemingly infinite amount of times they will extend copyright(and a big thanks to the Supreme Court for OK'ing it), I almost wish they'd just grant Disney a special exemption on their independently created characters (i.e. no Cinderella, Snow White, etc...) and put the copyright on everything else back to a reasonable amount (life + 50?).

        I think it's a great injustice that there are people who died that quite probably intended their wo
      • Re:Hmm... (Score:3, Interesting)

        Screw that, they should just get it over with, return the copyright laws to normal and specifically make a law taking Mickey out of the public domain in perpetuity. Yeah, it's stupid and arbitrary, just like the rest of the laws Disney et al get passed, but at least this way the damage is minimized.
    • Re:Hmm... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 20, 2003 @09:45PM (#5771084)

      They are using mp3. Surely this is an opening for vorbis, or better still Ogg Speex [speex.org] which is optimised for encoding speech -- there are plugins for Winamp, DirectShow filters, and a plugin for XMMS too.

  • by Xacid ( 560407 ) on Sunday April 20, 2003 @09:23PM (#5770995) Journal
    Does anyone find it weird that they're using Gutenburg in a phrase related to sound, not sight? Gutenburg helped end the need for everything to be said...
    • by Anonymous Coward
      Gutenburg helped end the need for everything to be said...

      Writing was invented long before Gutenberg.
      • Writing was invented long before Gutenberg.

        But the printing press without doubt multiplied the availability of written works many times over.
        • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 20, 2003 @09:51PM (#5771101)
          The Chinese used the print for thousands of years, long before Gutenberg.

          Actually, Gutenberg did not invent the printing, but the mobile printing.The Chinese language has thousands and thousands of ideograms and under these circumstances mobile printing is not a practical solution anyway; plate printing is easier to use. If it was useful for them The Chinese would have invented it.
          • The chinese DID invent it, they just abandoned it, because as you say, it's not worth the effort. However, I believe that Gutenberg invented his press without ever learning about the Chinese version, and therefore deserves full credit for the invention. The Chinese also deserve credit for having invented a movable type printing press, but deserve derision for sticking with an unbelievably inefficient alphabet, which prevented them from progressing past medieval levels of development for over a thousand ye
            • by dalutong ( 260603 ) <djtansey@@@gmail...com> on Monday April 21, 2003 @03:32AM (#5772000)
              I see you're neither a linguist or historian. I'm both.

              An "inefficient" "alphabet" can not stunt a society's growth. This cast is most easily proven by China's current development. They are using Chinese ideograms, are developing rapidly, are developing cutting edge ideas, and have good literacy rates.

              Historically speaking the slow down of development can most easily be tied to politics, Confucianism, and society. You have to remember -- in 1300 they had 1000 foot-long boats and may have even curcumnavigated the globe (it seems Zhenghe was a pretty amazing guy.)

              So don't blame a language for limiting a people's potential. We, as global citizens, could be eons ahead of where we are now if we could erase history and social stigma (and preference) in an exact way. In 1000 years someone will make a comment about why we didn't. It will be clear then, as it is now, what we are/did wrong. The Chinese of 1300, for whatever reasons, decided that they didn't need to keep going forward in the sciences, so they didn't. I wish they hadn't, but they did.
              • by Galvatron ( 115029 ) on Monday April 21, 2003 @04:36AM (#5772072)
                I see you're neither a linguist or historian. I'm both.
                ...
                The Chinese of 1300, for whatever reasons, decided that they didn't need to keep going forward in the sciences, so they didn't.

                Though I am neither a linguist or a historian, I have heard that explanation. I don't buy it. Frankly, putting on academic airs, and then declaring that the "real" reason China isn't as advanced as Europe is that "they" decided not to be, whoever "they" might be, is pretty pathetic. How do people just decide not to go forward in science? By not spreading knowledge! The movable type printing press was a tremendously powerful tool for spreading learning in Europe. One can argue about the precise magnitude of the impact, but I personally believe that at the very least, the printing press made it nearly impossible to stop scientific progress. By providing a tool to widely disseminate learning, advances were spread across the continent that might otherwise have languished in obscurity.

                Just because technology is now advanced enough to accomodate a language with thousands of distinct symbols doesn't mean that it didn't hold them back at the time. Just because the Chinese can build on the European advances of the industrial revolution doesn't mean that the Chinese were capable of advancing to the point of having their own industrial revolution without outside aid.

                • I have heard that explanation. I don't buy it. Frankly, putting on academic airs, and then declaring that the "real" reason China isn't as advanced as Europe is that "they" decided not to be

                  What happened to Greece? They were the most cultured country in the western world, the envy of every country around them. Alexander the Great conquered Afganistan, Egypt and everything in between, and installed, not his birth culture, but that of the Greeks. And then they stopped growing, and became just another appen
                  • What happened to Greece?

                    Over expansion and a power void left by Alexander. After Alexander died, his followers fought vicious civil wars, totally destroying whatever cuture was built up. Macedonian men divorced their foreign wives, and decided that rather than having an integrated nation, they'd prefer to be emperors. Any hope for a long term stable nation was dashed. Feeding into my earlier point, much of the Greek learning was known only to a few academics, and so was lost for centuries, until the p

                    • China, though in possesion of the exact same technology, was not able to exploit the power of printed text until Europe broght the industrial revolution to Asia.

                      I think it's more likely that the powers that be chose not to. The power of language is well understood and tightly controlled by each Dynasty. Political commentaries are basically unheard of, except when written by appointed observers directly to the Emperor. Even then, there was some chance of losing your head if your criticisms struck a nerv

                • by dalutong ( 260603 ) <djtansey@@@gmail...com> on Monday April 21, 2003 @08:59AM (#5772635)
                  If you remember correctly, Western civilization has had its eras of non-development. The "dark ages," for instance. Also, when the Romans started to be dominant they stopped developing as much. That lasted longer than the Chinese dark ages (which, at most, could be from 13-something to 17 or 18-something.) But Latin has always had an alphabet! Why did Europe stop thinking for almost 1000 years? Because they chose not to! Religion and Feudalism, among other things, created a general disinterest in promoting science.

                  The fact of the matter is that societies rise and fall. They grow, stop developing as quickly, feel they "know enough" and then have some outside force make them fall.

                  Even now we can see this effect. The Cold War is over, information is spread more quickly than ever, but you don't see people trying to get commercial space flight or moon resorts up and running. Those who have the money don't care, those who do care don't have the money. Information won't make it magically happen.

                  That was China in 1300. I have studied China my whole life. I believe what I believe because I know who Chinese society works, speak, read and write Chinese, and have seen students in the country, with no books, learn advanced algebra off of a chalk-board -- because they were inclined to do so. Had they thought farming was enough and that the government would take care of them, no amount of reading would have gotten them off their asses to do work.

                  Look at America! Are people are some of the least education in the modern world. People laugh at how simple our education is. How is that possible if we have the largest free library system in the world? Because we don't care to learn.
                  • Look at America! Are people are some of the least education in the modern world. People laugh at how simple our education is. How is that possible if we have the largest free library system in the world? Because we don't care to learn.

                    I beg to differ. While there are certainly terrible aspects to the American education system, we also have the BEST in the world. Why do you think people from all around the world come here to study? While in lower levels, there is no doubting that many are left behind,

              • I see you're neither a linguist or historian. I'm both.

                An "inefficient" "alphabet" can not stunt a society's growth. This cast is most easily proven by China's current development. They are using Chinese ideograms, are developing rapidly, are developing cutting edge ideas, and have good literacy rates.

                Sorry, you may know China, but you clearly shouldn't be making blanket statements like this without broadening your knowledge.

                Case in point, take Ottoman Turkey. Ottoman turkish (and the other variant

            • I believe that Gutenberg invented his press without ever learning about the Chinese version, and therefore deserves full credit for the invention.

              Generally, independent reinvention is credited only when it occurs at roughly the same period in time.

              The Chinese [...] deserve derision for sticking with an unbelievably inefficient alphabet, which prevented them from progressing past medieval levels of development for over a thousand years.

              First of all, there is no alphabet. Chinese words are not spelled

          • If by "mobile printing" you mean moveable type, that's not right either. Moveable type (of terra cotta) was in use in China by the 11th century. It is true, though, that block printing was far more prevelant, for the reason you mention as well as others (the possibility of multiple printing runs, for example).

            This isn't to say that Gutenberg's invention wasn't historically important. It's just that, strictly speaking, he didn't invent printing anymore than Columbus "discovered" America.
    • The printing press was a the first effective tool for broadcasting information to a large population. Gutenberg did not invent writing, he invented a way of mass copying written language. Considering it that way, audio broadcasting fits right in.

      Bruce

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 20, 2003 @09:23PM (#5770999)
    I thought I could find sound bytes of Police Academy , Short Circuit, or Cocoon on here... where are they? What gives?
  • by zubernerd ( 518077 ) on Sunday April 20, 2003 @09:23PM (#5771000)
    According to what I read on the linked site, they are using "Test-to-Speech" software. This seems no different than using a text-to-speech agent on your own computer. What is the advantage for recording the text-to-speech? (When I think of audio books, I usually think of a human reader... not a computer - a human tends to be more accurate, esp. with languages like english)
    • What is the advantage for recording the text-to-speech?

      they're not recording anything. they're asking you to install the text-to-speech software on your machine and have your machine read it... a feat which most modern OS's can already do out of the box.
      • they're not recording anything. they're asking you to install the text-to-speech software on your machine and have your machine read it... a feat which most modern OS's can already do out of the box.

        actually they have some available for download:
        http://www.etc-edu.com/modules.php?nam e =Downloads& d_op=viewdownload&cid=24

        also this bootable disk that reads books is also pretty cool:
        http://www.etc-edu.com/modules.php?name=Dow nloads& d_op=viewdownload&cid=19

        alas, because of the bitchslappi
    • I don't know what they are doing, but one example would be for someone to go through the text and add in markers for how the computer should say things (angry, loud, etc), so you get the right inflections and voices etc.

      • someone to go through the text and add in markers for how the computer should say things (angry, loud, etc),

        It is a shame that, in all his inventing, Guttenburg didn't take time to invent the humble emoticon. :-(

      • Hey, that's a good idea! The only problem would be that using a markup language to indicate emotions could introduce subtle changes in the meaning of the text (ie/ bias of the transcriber).
        • "The only problem would be that using a markup language to indicate emotions could introduce subtle changes in the meaning of the text (ie/ bias of the transcriber)."

          As I see it, there are two possibilites:

          1. Read the work in a clinical, unemotional tone with nothing besides the grammatically appropriate inflection. This would be unbiased, boring, and only marginally more useful than an automated text-to-speech translation.

          2. Treat the audio version of the work as a partially subjective performance.

      • I don't know what they are doing, but one example would be for someone to go through the text and add in markers for how the computer should say things (angry, loud, etc), so you get the right inflections and voices etc.

        If you're willing to do this, why not just read it into a microphone. Yes, Joe Blow isn't going to sound like Larry Olivier, BU TIT... <inflection="emphasis"> MUST BEE </inflection=monotone> BET TER THAN A SYN THE SIZED VOICE.

        Or, better, just convince a starving actor / voice
        • Yes, Joe Blow isn't going to sound like Larry Olivier, BU TIT... MUST BEE BET TER THAN A SYN THE SIZED VOICE.

          No joke!

          I tried listening to Dracula, and after about eight seconds, what popped into my head was:

          "VAN HEL SING WALKED UP TO THE VAM PIRE AND SAID "THERE IS A SEVERE THUN DER STORM ALERT FOR THE FOL LOWING COUNTIES...""
    • Here's the advantage: I can't afford AT&T's excellent Natural Voices [att.com] and other commercial offerings that make the standard free stuff that comes with your OS sound like crap. Its not just aesthetics, the free voices are simply difficult to understand most of the time. Download Coolspeech(share) [bytecool.com] or Readplease(free) [readplease.com] and find out for yourself. Yuck.

      Considering the link has been slashdotted already, I can't listen to tell you what kind of voice they're using, but if its a good commercial voice then more
      • by IIRCAFAIKIANAL ( 572786 ) on Sunday April 20, 2003 @11:24PM (#5771378) Journal
        I'm of the opinion that if the voice doesn't sound British, they're wasting everyone's time. All audio books should be read by British people. It's probably some crappy free robotic sounding voice.

        Hey, what would a british robot sound like?

        [British]Crush! Kill! Destroy! Pip pip![/British]

        (Incidently, I'm not British, but I work with one and somehow it's rubbing off on me. I actually said "bloody" the other day. Being Canadian, this could get downright messy. "This poutine bloody sucks, eh?" *shudder*)
      • it's the eloquence engine with a custom front end to mark-up the text for inflection and other parsody factors. the front end went thru 37 releases over a year of testing. we are working with a speech therapist and hope to achieve an "ideal" result by end of summer.
    • When I think of audio books, I usually think of a human reader... not a computer - a human tends to be more accurate, esp. with languages like english

      True. However, have you considered the cost of making audio recordings of books?

      Another interesting note would be that audio books tend to use abridged versions for historical reasons --the size of audio-tape cartridges. This may or maynot be the case now, but even newer recordings seem to be done this way. With automated text-to-speech this problem could b

  • Review (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 20, 2003 @09:26PM (#5771010)
    These are NOT HUMANS reading the Project Gutenberg books to you. This is a COMPUTER generated reading of the books. If you enjoy the soothing voice of Stephen Hawking then you will enjoy listening to Project Gutenberg radio. I could only take about 2 minutes of Tolstoys' "The Cossacks" before I had to shut it off.
    • Re:Review (Score:3, Funny)

      by rlanctot ( 310750 )
      Just be glad it wasn't Steve Gutenberg reading it. A friend of mine got ear damage listening to Cuccoon without earmuffs.
    • Actually, funny you should bring that up at all. Yesterday, I was in Barnes and Noble and came across one of Stephen Hawking's audio books on CD, and it's HIM reading it using his voice synthesizer, for the whole damned book.

      This [amazon.com] is the one I saw, I believe.
      • Actually, funny you should bring that up at all. Yesterday, I was in Barnes and Noble and came across one of Stephen Hawking's audio books on CD, and it's HIM reading it using his voice synthesizer, for the whole damned book.

        You really think a world-class physicist sat there and transcribed his book through his synthesizer? Yeah, I'm sure Hawking's got a lot of time on his hands. And it's so weasy to read your book and poke at the keys of your synthesizer with a pen held in your mouth.

        More likely, he
        • I said that based on what I read on the Amazon page and on the back of the box. I don't know how he did it specifically, I was simply going by what the information on the audio book said. Here's a quote from the page I linked in my original post:

          Physicist Stephen Hawking suffers from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrig's disease. The condition has progressed to the point where he can no longer speak for himself. Hawking, therefore, uses a voice synthesizer to deliver this series of po
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Gutenberg is a great thing. I hope someday they will catalog todays popular software.
  • Wait. Who the hell are the Gutenberg family? :P

    Yo Grark
    Canadian Bred with American Buttering
    • by tgbg ( 667294 )
      Project Gutenberg Etexts are usually created from multiple editions, all of which are in the Public Domain in the United States, unless a copyright notice is included. Therefore, we usually do NOT keep any of these books in compliance with any particular paper edition.

      We are now trying to release all our books one year in advance of the official release dates, leaving time for better editing. Please be encouraged to send us error messages even years after the official publication date.

      Most people start

  • by dethl ( 626353 ) on Sunday April 20, 2003 @09:38PM (#5771056)
    Some of us don't have the connection to be able to listen to this. I would rather download this into (insert favorite audio codec here).
    • dont worry couse of /. no one can hear them
    • You can download some of them. Dracula is a 350 MB mp3 file. The Time Machine is only 50 megs. (It's short. I remember reading that one in just a few hours)
    • by frovingslosh ( 582462 ) on Sunday April 20, 2003 @10:12PM (#5771165)
      zaphod4 says you can, but that really misses the point. If it's just software generated voice, then why in the world download the output for every book, rather than distribute the software and the source file? This would let the user play the audio when they wanted with a far smaller download, and only have to download the source file for the next book, and even let the user use the software on other (non Project G.) files.

      I'm very unimpressed with this, and it seems a real waste of a resource like Project G. If they see that there is a need for public domain audio books (and I certainly expect there is), it would seem extremely straightforward for a group like this to get humans to volunteer to read a public domain audio book and digitize it for an archive. This would yield far better results than a project of such low quality audio and delivered in a bandwidth wasteful way that make it unlikely the current form will be well received.

      • If they see that there is a need for public domain audio books (and I certainly expect there is), it would seem extremely straightforward for a group like this to get humans to volunteer to read a public domain audio book and digitize it for an archive.

        If they asked for volunteers for this, I would be the first to step forward.
        • If they asked for volunteers for this, I would be the first to step forward.

          Why wait? Project Gutenberg already stores copies of computer-read books; if you want to read one of thier books into the computer, do it and send them a copy. (You might want to email Jim Tinsley or gutvol-d first, but don't wait for someone to ask you to volunteer.)
      • from this link, it seems you can download a bootable cd with the player and a hundred or so books. then you can boot the disc and play the books:

        bootable cd [etc-edu.com]

        i wouldnt be surprised if you looked around and found a link to the player. alas the site is now dead. check back in a day or so though and i bet you'll find it.
        • download a bootable cd with the player and a hundred or so books

          Your link is broken so I can't verify, but chances are the CD just contains the aforementioned mp3s and an mp3 playing program.

          What the parent post wanted was the software used to do the text-to-speech conversion.

          If this software were on the CD, they could have fit thousands or tens of thousands of works on the CD. Talking pretty quickly you can say about 4 syllables a second. If each syllable were 4 letters long, that is 32 bits per seco
      • Audiobooks are not cheap to produce. In a decent quality production, you need a performer with a reasonable voice in a quiet studio reading for hours upon hours on end.

        Many of us are familiar with the works of Robert Jordan [wotmania.org]. The 9th book in the Wheel of Time series, Winter's Heart [barnesandnoble.com], is about 25 hours in length (20 CD's in the unabridged version [booksontape.com]). A fantastic, first-rate performance.

        To produce that, you had to pay the performer for 3.2 working days, and that's just for the bits you actually use. Let's

        • You simply can not get the kind of quality that makes for an enjoyable listening experience with a volunteer mom recording WAV files onto her PC with a Compaq built-in-the-monitor microphone.

          Enjoyable listening experience is subjective. You would certainly get better then running these books through a text-to-sound program. Whether it's good enough or not is up to you. The children of that mom have probably never said "Don't read to us; just put in the CD because it will should better."
        • Sorry but audio books are relatively cheap to produce. First off a full recording studio is massively excessive and totally unnecessary, all you need is a quite room and a quality microphone. You record it directly onto hard disk via a proaudio sound card. Cool Edit 2000, is more than enough to do all the required post production.

          Quite rooms are ten a penny, you just need a house in the countryside. In fact more important than a quite room is a room with good accoustics. Ultimately it does not matter if an
        • To produce that, you had to pay the performer for 3.2 working days,

          I don't think you understand non-profits volunteering.

          Also, you don't need actors and perfect sound fit for an audiophile. This is just an audio book, not a dramatic representation. 8kHz mono read by some stupid bloke is just fine. It would be far better than low grade computer generated speech which is barely understandable.

        • Audiobooks are not cheap to produce. In a decent quality production, you need...

          Compaired to a text-to-speech system, the project could certainly get people to produce far better sounding books.

          You simply can not get the kind of quality that makes for an enjoyable listening experience with a volunteer mom recording WAV files onto her PC with a Compaq built-in-the-monitor microphone.

          If you want good-sounding audio, you're going to have to pay for it.

          This strikes me as the same mentatlty that claims t

    • the books are available for download.
  • by Gefiltefish ( 125066 ) on Sunday April 20, 2003 @09:46PM (#5771085)

    This is exciting. I just can't wait for Gutenberg video to come out. My votes for priority works to be put into public domain video include: Lady Chatterly's Lover and for the more perverse slashdotters out there, Lolita.

    The classics will really come alive!
  • Man, I hope they do justice to Police Academy, Short Circuit, Cocoon, and Three Men and a Baby. I think those Gutenberg classics will be fabulous as audiobooks.
  • by jesterzog ( 189797 ) on Sunday April 20, 2003 @09:47PM (#5771095) Homepage Journal

    Who's Online There are currently, 841 guest(s) and 1 member(s) that are online.

    (And rising every second.) I guess slashdot hasn't quite kicked into top gear yet, then. :)

  • How about Torrent's for those mp3s of Dracula and the Time Machine? If BitTorrent really wants to gain legitimacy it would do well to become regular practice for free content providers such as this to use it.
  • by elpapacito ( 119485 ) on Sunday April 20, 2003 @10:20PM (#5771184)
    Imagine being blind and being able to access (maybe in a not far away future)
    the entire Gutenberg ebook library by internet. No need to read the whole book
    with some kind of Braille device, no need to -own- a text-2-speech program
    and, maybe, no need to own a computer if the stream is broadcasted with some other equipement.

    Blind people will -love- this and I can't but be happy for them.
    • Wouldn't a blind person already have a text-2-speech program to access the Internet and in turn use that to read the texts anyway?

      A better use would be to automagically convert the text to [insert favourite format] so you could play it with your portable audio player? I listened to the LOTR and the Hobbit over several months in my MP3 player.

      Course, these books would all sound like they were being read by Stephen Hawking, which would be wierd if we weren't listening to A Brief History of Time (which isn't
    • no need to own a computer if the stream is broadcasted with some other equipement.
      Oops, missed that part when I thought out my reply. I still stand with by comments though, even if they don't quite address your entire point. :)
    • Ditto, but in our house, it's a bit of envy. To paraphrase my wife: ahh, to only be [blind|deaf].

  • Listening to these books is somewhat reminiscent of the fine works of MC Hawking. Dig.

    Seriously.... I understand the potential that such a project can reach. However, I'm curious what will lie in the future of public domain books, and having human read audio freely available.
  • oh well, as of 11:41 PM EDT, the link is broken. one thing you can't do to real radio is have too many users. ;-)

    mp

    • "one thing you can't do to real radio is have too many users. ;-)"

      The word "broadcast" does seem to have acquired a wider range of meaning than previously. I was wondering where they got the money to operate several actual over the air radio stations. Apparently they didn't. Perhaps a new word for over the air broadcasting and only over the air broadcasting is needed.

  • Couldn't one (with a nice fast connection and large harddrive) set up a server that allows users to make accounts. With these accounts they could start book projects. The new projects could be listed on the front page -- even if they are incomplete. They could be updated chapter by chapter. They could be voted on and commented on, so as to encourage the reader (whose project it is) to finish the book/do more books/redo chapters that had slip-ups.

    It seems that you could eventually have a good collection of
  • by Kynn ( 38537 ) on Sunday April 20, 2003 @11:57PM (#5771516) Homepage

    The site seems to be dead currently, but that's undoubtedly just the Slashdot Effect.

    I have no idea what they're using, but for the sake of accessibility and future-compatibility, I hope they're following the standards of the DAISY Consortium [daisy.org]. DAISY has devised a standard for talking books [daisy.org] which deserves support, especially as it's been specifically designed to provide accessibility for people with disabilities.

    Learn more about the DAISY Consortium here [daisy.org], and in the FAQ here [daisy.org].

    --Kynn

  • Mirror (Score:3, Informative)

    by soul_cmd ( 654552 ) <soul_cmd@c[ ]ast.net ['omc' in gap]> on Monday April 21, 2003 @03:05AM (#5771950)
    If you head over to the main Gutenberg Library [promo.net] site and search for "Time Machine" the audio book appears to come up. It would seem that ibiblio has the book on its FTP (and available for download) for at least "Time Machine". If you're looking to get started here's a direct link [ibiblio.org] to the zip.
  • Everyone send in ogg samples of them reading a phrases from one of the works published by Gutenberg. String 'em all together and you have a human voice instead of computer reading it to you!

    (I'm just kidding, this would sound like crap).

    But it would be nice if some humans would read the works and encode them for distribution so that people don't have to be subjected to speech that still doesn't sound much better than SAM (Software Automated Mouth) on my Atari 800.

    bcl

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