Free e-books Want something to read? What would you do with free books?

Back in the day, before I became aware of e-books, I managed to amass a sizable personal library. I purchased many computer books, and bookshelves, of course. I then discovered that Goodwill and other second hand stores had books for a dollar or two. That became one of my hobbies, finding good, used, technical, self help, and business books. Since then, I’ve discovered that the libraries and YMCA and JCCA sell used books once or twice a year. The last day of their sales, they usually have $5 a bag or box of books. I have not found a good place to get used bookshelves though. I just need to find some time to read something besides the internet.

I then became aware of e-book publishers. Packt Publishing offers what they call Free Learning. Everyday, they offer an e-book for free download. They do take a couple of breaks per year, and they do offer the same books multiple times per year, but I’ve claimed a significant number of very interesting (to me at least) computer books for free, by just logging into their website every day and clicking a few places on their website.

I also discovered that Barnes & Noble, Google Play and Amazon Kindle offer free e-books. I’ve managed to purchase over 17,000 Nook books over the last couple of years (pre covid19 of course). I don’t know how many I’ve gotten from Google, but it’s a bunch. I know there are other publishers and bookstores which offer free books as well.

The cool thing is I don’t have to have bookshelves or move them when I move. The publishers/distributors keep them in the cloud, for when I want them.

A lot of these books are not things that I would ever read, but there are certainly more that I would read, than I ever will read, unless I learn to read really fast or get a bunch of computers to help with processing the contents into something much shorter.

I think that I might use some of the books to train computers to write similar best selling content and then publish a bunch of books that I would never read, but many others might. I’d be willing to split the profits with the computers.

Anyone have any ideas about what to do with lots of free reading material?

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I’d be extremely keen to mirror your collection so it’s never lost. How large is it and would you be willing to let me get my hands on it too?

Most likely I’d try extracting the metadata and put it into a database with a GraphQL front-end to make an API for people to search it or use it to complete the metadata in their own collections.

The ebooks are not mine to share, but I’m pretty sure you could get your own by visiting the sites I mentioned and many more on the internet. Just because I got them for free, does not mean they are not worth something to someone. Many of the ones that I’ve “gotten” from Google Play claim to be marked down, so I’m pretty sure they will offer them for sale most of the time.

I have no idea how large the collections might be. Sometimes they are downloaded when I “purchase them”, and sometimes not. I have reset and rebuilt my computers, a few times, since I’ve started collecting them. I’ve even intentionally reset my Chromebook because it was running out of internal storage. I’m not even sure if I can get to them as files. The publishers are storing the books until I get ready to utilize them. Some of the publishers want you to use their interface, so you can’t share them, I guess.

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Mea culpa, I made an erroneous leap from ‘free’ to ‘uncopyrighted’ that I shouldn’t have made. All good.

That being said, I already have biblioteka and Books3 stored on my computer, so it’s not as if I don’t have the resources to do the metadata project :smiley:

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I just found that Wal-Mart eBooks is giving away free eBooks. I was surprised that several of the free books were ones that I could imagine myself reading. I have not yet even figured out how to access them, after “buying” them, but was pleased to find another source of free books that might interest me.