Voyager Japan releases 4,000 Japanese eBooks on Internet Archive
Voyager Japan, Inc. in Tokyo, Japan, in conjunction with the Internet Archive in San Francisco, California, has released 4,000 Japanese ebooks in PDF format from Japan’s public domain book archive, Aozora Bunko. Aozora Bunko, or “Blue Sky Library,” advocates for the increased availability of free Japanese literature online and is known as Japan’s Project Gutenberg. The complete Aozora Bunko contains more than 10,000 public domain books and short stories.
Readers can search for books in either Japanese or English at the Internet Archive’s Open Library (http://openlibrary.org/) website, making them more accessible to students of the Japanese language. PDF ebooks can be viewed on computers, tablets, and smartphones using freely available reader software, or directly in the browser at the Open Library web site. EPUB3 files will be available in 2012. Over the next year, Voyager Japan and the Internet Archive will work to expand the total number of Aozora Bunko titles available. General information on the collection is available at the Internet Archive (http://www.archive.org/details/aozorabunko).
The titles include famous Japanese authors such as Natsume Sōseki, Mori Ōgai, Akutagawa Ryūnosuke, and Dazai Osamu, as well as one of the most famous Japanese novels, The Tale of Genji by Murasaki Shikibu. In addition, the collection includes books by Unno Jūza, the father of Japanese science fiction; writings from the writer/physicist Terada Torahiko; and western masters in translation such as Edgar Allan Poe, Charles Dickens, and Jonathan Swift.
The Internet Archive makes available a public XML catalog of all the Aozora Bunko titles using Open Publication Distribution System (OPDS: http://opds-spec.org). OPDS is an open data format that can be imported by multi-platform reading applications including Aldiko, Bluefire Reader, and Mantano, among others. The XML catalog is located at http://bit.ly/sq1cEX.
For more information, contact Peter Brantley, Director of the BookServer Project, Internet Archive, firstname.lastname@example.org.