Cool Toys pics of the day: Speed Museum: Book of Hours

Picture_41

Book of Hours:
http://speedmuseum.org/BookOfHours/

You did know I’m a librarian, right? Even if I am an Emerging
Technologies Librarian, I “grew up” in some pretty old fashioned
libraries loving some pretty old fashioned books and virtually
everything about them. My main library social life is hanging out with
the rare book folk, who I adore. So every now and then I slip in some
sort of utterly delicious, delectable, glorious book candy, like this.
🙂 Usually it will come from a library, but this time it is from a
museum. I like museums, too. Yeah, yeah, and opera and symphony and
all that classic geek jazz. (For balance, I also love blues, real
jazz, doing the jitterbug, cajun, roller derby and … uh … puns.)

OK, back to the matter at hand. There are a lot of online rare book
readers, with PictureIt
as the new open source entry. This one, from the Speed Art Museum in
Kentucky, has many more features and value added content than I
usually see. They have the book, the turning page, the basics. They
also have a full translation. Cool, different, I like it. 🙂 They also
have an animation to transition between sections of the work that is
engaging, but perhaps not the clearest way to communicate the
sections, and navigation is a bit confusing. It got my attention,
though, and it is all so gorgeous that I didn’t care that it was hard
to find my way around at first. What I really love about this is the
way they stuffed in so MUCH added content, explanations of the
technology, history, mechanisms of analysis and more, all organized
into sections like “Bookmaking” and “Figures & Symbols.” The sections
are not in the same place each time as you move from book to book,
hopefully encouraging more exploration. The book also encourages the
viewer to zoom in and out for more detail, and responds very quickly,
even over my wireless at home and my cranky slow computer.

Bottom line, though, is that the book is just stunning. Enjoy.

(via @larryferlazzo)

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