[linux-elitists] Hey Don!

Evan Prodromou evan@prodromou.san-francisco.ca.us
Mon Apr 29 16:10:29 PDT 2002


>>>>> "DM" == Don Marti <dmarti@zgp.org> writes:

    DM> But we need a general, drop-in, feature-complete replacement
    DM> for Amazon, as PNG is a drop-in replacement for GIF.

    DM> If you're writing hypertext and mention a book, it's good to
    DM> link the title to something.  For books that don't have their
    DM> own web site, as Real World Linux Security does, a link to an
    DM> informative bookstore page works well.

What about booksense.com? They're an aggregator for independent
booksellers, and they have a really pretty damn decent collection. You
requested:

    DM> 1. A reasonably secure, or at least not on crack, software platform

---8<---
evan@gaff~ HEAD www.booksense.com
[...]
Server: Apache/1.3.12 (Unix) secured_by_Raven/1.5.0
---8<---

OK, so, they use JSPs, which probably means they're using Tomcat (or
GNUJSP -- now THAT would be cool), which are sort of the definition of
"on crack," being invented by insane XML-crazy Italians, but at least
it's on Apache.

    DM> 2. A sound privacy policy, including a Vixie-friendly policy for
    DM> mail opt-in

    http://www.booksense.com/about/security.jsp

And I quote (thanks to the magic of FAIR USE):

    "Privacy Statement 

    The BookSense.com family of sites is deeply committed to protecting
    your privacy and your First Amendment rights, and this commitment
    extends to the personal information you provide when you use one of
    our sites. The personal information you submit to any BookSense.com
    site will not be shared, sold, or disclosed to third parties in any
    form, for any purposes, at any time unless we first have your
    consent. This information includes, but is not limited to, your email
    address. All our mailings conform to an opt-in policy, which means you
    have to elect to receive information from us. You will never receive
    unsolicited email from a BookSense.com site."

If you enjoyed this example of FAIR USE, please send $1 to Ruben Safir.        

   DM> 3. Good selection

Pretty good.

   DM> 4. Working access for browsers and users

What does this mean?

Anyways, you can also put in a book's ISBN as an URL, and come up
with a book listing. Not with all the fancy hoo-haw that you get with
an Amazon page ("FIND CDS BY SAUL BELLOW/FIND DVDS STARRING SAUL
BELLOW"), but they work.

   http://www.booksense.com/product/info.jsp?isbn=0939785005

The only funny part is the zip code thing, which isn't too fun for
international users. But otherwise, it's all there.

And, hell, independent bookstores, man! Fifth (behind copyleft, fair
use, public libraries, and Seth David Schoen) in line for defending
your right to access to information. Stalwarts of the information
revolution!

~ESP

-- 
Evan Prodromou
evan@prodromou.san-francisco.ca.us




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