A New Resource for E-Books in the Public Domain: GITenberg Prototype Officially Launches
Congrats and kudos to Eric Hellman and Seth Woodworth on today’s official launch.
In Their Own Words:
Gitenberg is a collaborative, open source community curating and publishing highly usable and attractive ebooks in the public domain. Our books are free to use by anyone for any purpose. They contain detailed metadata and are accessible in a wide variety of formats.
From the Go to Hellman Blog:
GITenberg is a prototype that explores how Project Gutenberg might work if all the Gutenberg texts were on Github, so that tools like version control, continuous integration, and pull-request workflow could be employed. We hope that Project Gutenberg can take advantage of what we’ve learned; work in that direction has begun but needs resources and volunteers.
It’s hard to believe, but GITenberg started 6 years ago when Seth Woodworth started making Github repos for Gutenberg texts. I joined the project two years later when I started doing the same and discovered that Seth was 43,000 repos ahead of me. The project got a big boost when the Knight Foundation awarded us a Prototype Fund grant to “explore the applicability of open-source methodologies to the maintenance of the cultural heritage” that is the Project Gutenberg collection.
So here’s what’s been done:
- Almost 57,000 texts from Project Gutenberg have been loaded into Github repositories.
- EPUB, PDF, and Kindle Ebooks have been rebuilt and added to releases for all but about 100 of these.
- Github webhooks trigger dockerized ebook building machines running on AWS Elastic Beanstock every time a git repo is tagged.
- Toolchains for asciidoc, HTML and plain text source files are running on the ebook builders.
- A website at https://www.gitenberg.org/ uses the webhooks to index and link to all of the ebooks.
- www.gitenberg.org presents links to Github, Project Gutenberg, Librivox, and Standard Ebooks.
- Cover images are supplied for every ebook.
- Human-readable metadata files are available for every ebook
- Syndication feeds for these books are made available in ONIX, MARC and OPDS via Unglue.it.
About Gary Price
Gary Price (firstname.lastname@example.org) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. He earned his MLIS degree from Wayne State University in Detroit. Price has won several awards including the SLA Innovations in Technology Award and Alumnus of the Year from the Wayne St. University Library and Information Science Program. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com.