links for 2009-06-09

  • "I do think that ebooks are a step backwards, however. It's like the fax. It's not flexible or useful enough. Handheld computers should have greater power, and the Kindle instead has less. You should be able to access encyclopedias, dictionaries, and other searchable resources, just like we can on the computer or the iPhone. That's where the real benefit of portable handheld units are. Who cares about downloading Twilight? I care about having access to entire online libraries of reference works, maps, and encyclopedias.

    "I was also caught for days in a blackout in New York back in 2003. It's amazing how much goes out of your life when the power goes out. I learned a lesson about the value of books, as well as the ethereality of ATMs."

    Agreed. I'll continue waiting for a truly useful e-reader. Via. @R_Nash (Richard Nash) on Twitter

  • "An ongoing project devoted to discovering all the words and everything about them. More than 1.7 million words, and more than 130 million examples!"

    An on-line, crowd-sourced, multipurpose dictionary — featured at TED, so you know it's good.

  • An insightful and very funny essay on the power and surprise of Shakespeare's Richard III:

    "I suppose it is always true that in the realm of literature evil men are more interesting than good ones. If so, then Richard, who is a study in unfettered, unapologetic malice, is fascinating…."

  • 'Bio buzz: Top celeb biographer Wendy Leigh will not be working with Octomom Nadya Suleman. The baby-popper’s lawyer has been claiming that Leigh agreed to “ghost-write” Suleman’s memoir. “I was approached,” says Leigh, whose latest memoir is about Patrick Swayze. “But the talks were embryonic, and an announcement premature.”'

    Oh ha ha. Via Publishers Lunch

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