Saturday, May 24, 2008

Microsoft Ending Book Search; Internet Archive Affected

I have previously blogged about Microsoft Live Book Search which is similar to Google Book Search but was scanning/digitizing different books and approaching with a slightly different permission procedure. Microsoft has now announced that they will be stopping this service. Cf. articles in NYTimes or from AP. The business perspective on this is all about Google vs. Microsoft, but from those in biblical studies, it is a blow to the online books that will be available. According to the AP article, Microsoft "said it will give publishers digital copies of the 750,000 books and 80 million journal articles it has amassed." What does this mean for those books you have searched and used on Microsoft's site? Again from the AP, "Microsoft will take down two separate sites for searching the contents of books and academic journals next week, and Live Search will direct Web surfers looking for books to non-Microsoft sites."

The related issue here is that Microsoft is dropping support for the Internet Archive which hosts a ton of other resources I regularly use. The Internet Archive has resources to go on "for a while," but it would be a shame if this site went down too.


  1. The Internet Archive seems to be cautiously optimistic about their future, thanking Microsoft for their help, but also seeming to reassure people that even though Microsoft pulled the plug, they did it in a way that allowed them both to keep books already scanned and the equipment for scanning.

    From Stoa.

  2. So, here's a biblioblogger project... What are the top 50 resources that we should download before (heaven forbid) they are gone?

  3. Thanks for the helpful update link about, Mike.

    Jim, great idea... Here are two at the top of my head:

    Albert Schweitzer, Quest of the Historical Jesus

    Albert Schweitzer, The Mystery of the Kingdom of God

  4. How about the works of Kirsopp Lake - including the four volume set of articles on the Book of Acts, titled "The Beginnings of Christianity". There are also the classics by Henry Barclay Swete - including his version of the Greek OT, as well as his works on the Holy Spirit in the NT and the early church. One of the best finds on this site is the "Cambridge Septuagint." All the volumes are included -- including the volumes on the Historical Books of the OT. These particular volumes are not covered in the TC Ebind Index. Solomon Schechter's Some Aspects of Rabbinic Theology is still used as a textbook in the subject, and has been reprinted many times. J. B. Lightfoot's multi-volume text and commentary on several of the Apostolic Fathers is also available. Hmm... I think a blogpost is brewing...