These transcriptions of books by various nineteenth century authors of instructive books for teenagers, were made from 1997 onwards by Athelstane e-Books, of London, England, United Kingdom.
The books used are out of copyright in the European Union. That is to say, the author died 70 or more years before the year preceding this one. Since France has different rules we do not post books originating from that country. There are some books in which the copyright is owned by the webmaster or by one of his brothers.
We now use a Plustek OpticBook 3600 scanner to scan the pages at 600 dpi, ABBYY FineReader 7 or 8 to produce a first draft of the text, and Athelstane software to improve the text. At this stage the text is quite acceptably readable, but not good enough to publish. The Athelstane software is constantly being reviewed and improved.
We proof-read the chapters with numerous searching tests, which discover nearly all the errors. While doing so we listen to the text being read aloud in the background by Fonix ISpeak. The last step enables us to hear and correct most of the errors that may have been missed by the other steps.
When we prepare the book for reading by Fonix ISpeak, we not only add markup for the correct pauses at paragraphs and in other places where necessary, but also add the correct markup to distinguish between words like “wind”, “read”, “bow”, and well over 100 others, that look the same, but sound differently. In addition we add the correct markup to guide ISpeak into pronouncing correctly over 20,000 words that it has a problem with. These marked-up files are available upon application.
There are also certain elements within the text that are placed there as “watermarks” to indicate our ownership of the text.
As well as the xhtml files published on this website we produce several other versions of the book, for example a pdf version, a Microsoft eBook .lit file; a Gutenberg-style plain ascii file; a text read by Scansoft’s “Daniel” UK English voice; an xhtml file with the whole book in a single file; a simple format that can be loaded into a Pocket PC such as an Ipaq, and read aloud by the Fonix voice that you can purchase for your Pocket PC; and of course in the Fonix ISpeak version that we used to listen to the book while it was beng edited.
This process represents a large investment of time and skill. It takes several days of hard work to do all this. You may freely download a copy for your own use. We do not in the least mind if anybody wishes to offer any of our work on another website, but would point out that they should state that the copyright is ours, rather than claiming it as their own. Commercial use is strictly forbidden.
This general copyright notice was created by Athelstane E-Books