Here's a lazyweb idea for publishers: I often blog books here and when I do, I like to put up a picture of the cover. Normally I get these off of Amazon or Amazon UK, but it's often the case that Amazon's covers are grainy, missing, too small, or otherwise unsuitable (for some reason, an enormous number of Vertigo graphic novels have the wrong cover on Amazon).
So here's the idea: publishers should create default directories called "covers" at their server-root (e.g., tor.com/covers, harpercollins.co.uk/covers, etc) filled with high-rez PNGs or JPGs (or both) named after the book's ISBN -- for Neil Gaiman's Graveyard Book, it would be http://harpercollins.co.uk/0060530928.png. Tweak your robots.txt file to make sure the search-engines all crawl these directories, so when you search on images.google.com or images.yahoo.com for an ISBN, the publisher's high-rez would be right there at the top.
Many bloggers would just embed these images on their homepages (if you're worried about bandwidth costs, I'll personally kick in ten bucks to cover a year's worth of downloads for images hosted on S3), which means that publishers could simultaneously update their covers on (potentially) hundreds of old reviews when a new edition comes out, add banners like "New York Times Bestseller," etc. What's more, you can gather usage stats from your server logs and discover which bloggers are reviewing your books and which of those reviewers gets the most traffic.
With a nice, predictable naming scheme, this becomes a super-lightweight API. Delicious Monster and other services could automatically look up covers in the appropriate publisher's /covers directory. Indie booksellers, school librarians and other people producing promotional materials would have a canonical source. Even a publisher's own PR department could benefit from having an easily accessible, outside-the-firewall, easily accessed, up-to-date directory of cover art.
There you have it -- a practically zero-cost way for publishers to sell more books, get better market-intelligence, and get better control over the collateral used to sell their products online.
Redditor Vadermeer was in a local Goodwill Outlet and happened on a trove of files from Apple engineer Jack MacDonald from 1979-80, when he was manager of system software for the Apple II and ///.
Charles Duan from Public Knowledge sends us “a video we put together for Fair Use Week about copyright and fair use, to the tune of ‘Let It Go’ from Frozen, and full of clips of other fair use videos.”
An excellent excerpt from Aaron Perzanowski and Jason Schultz’s The End of Ownership: Personal Property in the Digital Economy on Motherboard explains how Section 1201 of the 1998 Digital Millennium Copyright Act — which bans tampering with or bypassing DRM, even for legal reasons — has allowed corporations to design their products so that using […]
DJI is the world’s leading designer and producer of easy-to-fly drones and aerial photography systems. If you’re a drone enthusiast, you want a DJI. If you know absolutely nothing about drones and think they’re weird, if you win a DJI you’re going to become a drone enthusiast.Enter this giveaway (for free, yes) and you’ll get a […]
Although there will never be a consensus about the best way to make coffee, any coffee connoisseur will agree that controlling the grind of your beans and balancing water temperature are the keys to a tasty cup. Since your plastic coffee pot doesn’t really allow for that kind of customization, going back to the French […]
Not all hackers are malicious information thieves—white-hat ethical hackers work with technology companies to ensure the security of their computer systems and user data. With all of today’s high-profile data breaches, ethical hackers are in considerable demand. To learn these critical skills and break into the high-paying cyber security field, try taking the courses in this […]