unglue.it: Soon, we launch.

The eight-hundred-some of you who are on the unglue.it mailing list already know this, and the rest of you should: we’re launching May 17.

So these few weeks are a crazy blur — all the things have to work some of them won’t work which things are crucial which will we forget which will we never see and discover in a spate of disaster in a user email we can fix fast in a back alley the users never see what do we still need to test how do we publicize what are all the things we’ve been putting off that we can put off no longer which things now finally have to be real — their details pinned down under glass, etherized upon a table. Choices made. The web site in reality is never as good as the one in your head, all the bells and whistles you wish you could implement, all the features that you wonder (a knife-edge of terror under it all) were we right when we said that wasn’t mission-critical, we don’t need to delay launch for it — but the web site in reality has one final comprehensive advantage over the one in your head:

It’s real.

So we’ll launch. Soon. With campaigns you can watch and share and contribute to. And when we do I’ll embed all the widgets for them in my blog so we can all track their progress from here, too.

But in the meantime: did you know? There are widgets! And I didn’t make them pretty — let’s all thank our awesome designer for that — but I did make them work. I pretend to be a web designer around here. I populate designs with live data from our back end, I weave HTML into Django, I make things toggle. So here are some books I really like, books on my wishlist at unglue.it. And here are some things I did.

[iframe src=”https://unglue.it/api/widget/9781442013438/” width=”152″ height=”325″ frameborder=”0″ style=”float:left;”]
[iframe src=”https://unglue.it/api/widget/9781590173930/” width=”152″ height=”325″ frameborder=”0″ style=”float:left; margin-top:-23px;”]
[iframe src=”https://unglue.it/api/widget/9780679741954/” width=”152″ height=”325″ frameborder=”0″ style=”float:left; margin-top:-46px;”]
[iframe src=”https://unglue.it/api/widget/9780756406691/” width=”152″ height=”325″ frameborder=”0″ style=”float:left;”]
[iframe src=”https://unglue.it/api/widget/9780070542358/” width=”152″ height=”325″ frameborder=”0″ style=”float:left;”]
[iframe src=”https://unglue.it/api/widget/9780674030718/” width=”152″ height=”325″ frameborder=”0″ style=”float:left;”]

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6 thoughts on “unglue.it: Soon, we launch.

  1. I clearly haven’t been paying enough attention. Rudin! Why didn’t I think to apply your concept to books like Rudin?! Has that been on the agenda from the start and I just wasn’t listening? What a remarkable idea.

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      1. Ungluing major textbooks could *revolutionize* education, or at least do a great deal to democratize it. I like my intro physics textbook (by Knight, or Knight, Jones, and Field for the algebra-based version), but if *any* reasonably standard intro textbook from the past 10-20 years were CC licensed, I would probably adopt it just for the sake of my students. And if you got one, competitive pressures would probably lead to a cascade of others.

        As for other items on my wishlist, how about all books by Taylor and Townsend (and Helliwell!) here: http://www.uscibooks.com/physics.htm, or all of Griffiths’ books (http://academic.reed.edu/physics/faculty/griffiths.html), or both of Schroeder’s books (http://physics.weber.edu/schroeder/). That’s most of a physics major, and I can hardly imagine how awesome it would be to be able to offer students books of that quality for the whole major under CC terms.

        I wonder if you could get a consortium of university physics departments (or libraries!) to fund a project like this? Even our department could probably find the funds to chip in a little. I’m obviously still boggling at this concept. 🙂

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      2. Well, I think you just answered how we could get at least one physics department to fund something like this 😉 And I expect there’s a few other physics departments we could talk to… That would, in fac, be pretty awesome 🙂

        Thanks for the book suggestions! I’ll pass them along to our rights guru. Do you have a wishlist at unglue.it? Can you add those books to it? That helps us keep track of where the demand is & prioritize our effort in securing rights holders. (Bonus points if you get your friends to wishlist the same books. 🙂

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      3. Done! I’ll see if I can talk it up a little, though I’m not exactly sure where to start with that.

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