May 26, 2022

New iPad App (Free): Orange, Bibliothèque nationale de France, & Voltaire Foundation Launch Enhanced Digital Edition of Voltaire’s Candide

From Today’s Announcement:

Orange and the BnF are launching a new collection of enhanced digital books designed to be read online and as an iPad app.

This project, aimed at students and the general public, explores how digitization can aid the learning process. The first of these enhanced masterpieces is a new digital edition of Voltaire’s Candide.

This free iPad app is being launched in December 2012 and the website will be accessible from January 2013.

The app will be classroom-tested during the first semester of 2013.


To provide an optimal reading experience, the app can simultaneously display the text and the BnF’s manuscript. Denis Podalydès’s voice allows the reader to hear a lively and personable interpretation of Candide by a major actor. With one touch, the reader can make use of the enhanced reading mode which facilitates access to the work: definitions, variants of the critical edition as established by the Voltaire Foundation, character sheets, place, concepts, illustrations of the text by 18th century engravers but also by Paul Klee, etc.

A map allows the reader to chart Candide’s journey while providing opportunities to further investigate the text thanks to interviews, a bibliography, and an iconographical library. Michel Le Bris, Alain Finkielkraut, Martine Reid and Georges Vigarello all shed new light on such themes as women in the 18th century, El Dorado, cultivating one’s garden, and images of the Other.

A collaborative space facilitating discussions on Candide, the garden gives each reader the opportunity to publish a notebook made up of their own comments and their favourite analyses. Each notebook takes the shape of a tree of learning in the garden. A living space in constant evolution, this garden grows according to the reinterpretations produced by the online reader-contributors. This section will be a vital learning tool for schools: teachers will be able to create their own presentations in the garden and invite their students to contribute to them.

According to the Voltaire Foundation, “René Pomeau’s definitive critical edition of Candide (OCV, vol.48) serves as the basis for a free.”

The app is free and available globally.

Take a Video Tour of App (in French)

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.