Greg Crane on CNN

December 20th, 2006 by Ross Scaife

From Google library: Open culture?

The University of California, which also belongs to the Open Content Alliance, has no regrets about allowing Google to scan at least 2.5 million of the books in its libraries. “We felt like we could get more from being a partner with Google than by not being a partner,” said university spokeswoman Jennifer Colvin.

But some of the participating libraries may have second thoughts if Google’s system isn’t set up to recognize some of their digital copies, said Gregory Crane, a Tufts University professor who is currently studying the difficulty accessing some digital content.

For instance, Tufts worries Google’s optical reader won’t recognize some books written in classical Greek. If the same problem were to crop up with a digital book in the Open Content Alliance, Crane think it will be more easily addressed because the group is allowing outside access to the material.

Google “may end up aiming for the lowest common denominator and not be able to do anything really deep” with the digital books, Crane said.

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