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Long archived tail

The Complete New Yorker is pretty cool. Kind of easy to describe, too: it’s every single New Yorker scanned and archived on 8 DVDs. You can get a tour of the interface here.

Yep, I bought it more or less instantly. Come on — $65 on Amazon (or Barnes and Noble)? Sure thing.

It’s cool. The interface is a tad clunky on the Mac, but it’s easy to flip through an issue and it’s very very readable. The search is slowish. I’m not sure how well it’s indexed; a search on Red Sox for the last five years or so returned nothing. On the other hand, a search on Cronenberg was quite successful. I imagine each article is tagged with key words.

For Rob: yes, you can search on department and author so all the Anthony Lane movie reviews are at your fingertips. This is awesome.

I’m curious as to the copyright issues. I don’t know what kinds of contracts the New Yorker signed with its writers; right of first publication? Rights in perpetuity? This came up as an issue when Dragon did their compilation on CD, and I seem to recall an unrelated court decision that opened the door for this sort of thing regardless of the original contract terms. If anyone knows what I’m talking about, speak up and I’ll write more on it when I have some real facts.

Either way, this is a way cool product. Mmm, history.

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