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HTML Writers Guild

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About Project Gutenberg

Project Gutenberg began in 1971 when Michael Hart was given, by pure luck, an operator's account with $100,000,000 of computer time in it by the operators of the Xerox Sigma V mainframe at the Materials Research Lab at the University of Illinois.

Michael Hart decided that the best way to use this windfall was to convert the worlds great literature to electronic versions. The rest is history, and "Project Gutenberg". Just as the invention of the printing press was responsible for a wide spread increase in literacy, so has the electronic age lead to a truly global communication network.

When Michael started his pioneering work markup languages and the internet were far in the future, so he stored all his documents as 'Plain Vanilla ASCII'. Now with the web, the internet and XML we have reached a stage where we can begin to convert some of these documents to XHTML and XML.

The official Gutenberg philosophy and history is fully explained on their site. See the link on the right of this page.

The HTML Writers Guild and Project Gutenberg

What better way is there to leave a gift to future generations than to mark up documents in XHTML or XML, and who is better to do this than members of the worlds largest organization of 'markup professionals', namely ourselves.

Marking up a document in XHTML means that it can be easily read and printed out. If it is also marked up in a descriptive XML then we can also search through it and analyze it using computer driven tools. Even the most basic markup adds a tremendous value to a document. Further more XML allows the addition of scholarly footnotes that are easily distinguished from the regular text.

Markup an e-text

Why not find out how you can get involved in this effort right now. Start marking up an e-text today! we also have a series of tutorials to help you on your way. These tutorials are listed on the tutorials page.(See also the right side bar). Our goal is to be marking up 20-30 e-texts a month by the time we have been in operation for a year.

You can mail me at Frank@hwg.org at any time if you have questions or problems.

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This page is maintained by frank@hwg.org. Last updated on 16 May 2003.
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