open source/out-of-copyright textbooks exist?
January 21, 2007 11:11 PM   Subscribe

Do open-source/out-of-copyright language textbooks exist? If yes, how would one go about locating/identifying them?

I'm looking for an out-of-copyright french or english language textbook in order to copy and translate its sample-sentences/exercises/lesson-organization in order to "quickly" create a free/open-source/on-line textbook in a couple of other languages. (for example, I'd take the french out-of-copyright one, and basically translate it into, say, sanskrit, thereby "quickly producing" an online sanskrit textbook, in effect.
(yes, i'd take care of the grammer differences etc; the idea is to mine the french or english book for its basic structures and examples).

So - How would one go about identifying/locating such out-of-copyright old textbooks? Where could I start?
posted by jak68 to Education (9 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
Wikipedia's Wikibooks section for the French language.
posted by acoutu at 11:16 PM on January 21, 2007


They could be right under your nose...
posted by pompomtom at 11:22 PM on January 21, 2007


well, wikibooks is for *creating* open source textbooks; I guess i'm more interested in finding an existing book that is out of print (and therefore open source by default only)...

pompomtom -- linky no worky..., tho i'll search metafilter again...
posted by jak68 at 12:01 AM on January 22, 2007


ok, linky worky: http://www.metafilter.com/mefi/53963
Nice links on free language instruction...
but again, i'm wondering about how to go about identifying/locating language texts that have gone out of copyright...
posted by jak68 at 12:06 AM on January 22, 2007


First check if there are any already scanned for you in Project Gutenburg.

If not, then use Project Gutenburg's guide to working out whether a text it out of copyright, then perhaps go down to your local university mega-library.
posted by -harlequin- at 12:16 AM on January 22, 2007 [1 favorite]


thanks harlequin
posted by jak68 at 12:44 AM on January 22, 2007


Try Textkit for downloads of scanned and PDFed versions of old Latin and Greek textbooks. I think you need to register (subscribe to a free mailing list or two) to get full access to materials at that site.
posted by pracowity at 3:35 AM on January 22, 2007 [1 favorite]


well, wikibooks is for *creating* open source textbooks; I guess i'm more interested in finding an existing book that is out of print (and therefore open source by default only)...

P.S.: Out of print does not equal out of copyright. In the US, you're pretty much looking at things published before 1923. Project Gutenberg is definitely your richest resource for all sorts of public-domain books, though.
posted by musicinmybrain at 5:22 AM on January 22, 2007


thanks guys
posted by jak68 at 12:54 PM on January 22, 2007


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