The Beta 1 version of the Little Library application was release earlier today (to mild applause by my family). You can check it out here:
Follow the instructions on that page, and you too can be the proud owner of a test library! You’ll be doing the world a service by breaking things now so they don’t have to later. Please send any comments and feedback my way.
Some new features include syncing with other libraries (actually works now!), automatic creation of an online library, a three page End User License Agreement that quotes Patrick Henry, file validation (to avoid loading those pesky malware files onto your computer and in the cloud), optimized iOS page sizes, automatic thumbnails for any items that have images in them, and the ability to upload and view multiple files for every item in your library. This last feature allows you to use your library as a private Web server. You could host every file of a website you’ve made in one item, and when users click on the item–BING!! (not really “BING”, I actually prefer non-microsoft products), they’re at your hosted Web site. So you could share your library with them, they could make changes, share with you, and you can have a dynamic Website between friends. How lovely.
Beyond Web sites, you could include all of the Word documents, books, videos, audio and images you wanted to all in the same library item, so that you can serve up a college course, a series of videos, a compilation of songs, etc. all packaged together nicely. You’ve just got to make sure the content is owned by you (as in, you created it, or you found it with a Creative Commons license that allows you to share it). That’s because the End User License Agreement requires you to only upload and share Creative Commons or Public Domain or other similarly licensed content.
So you can think of the Little Library not as a file repository, but as a multi-device, peer-to-peer, distributed online/offline open content bazaar based on bleeding-edge technologies like JQuery Mobile, HTML5 WebStorage, and CouchDB. Although that is a bit wordy…
More to come.