Free for Free

Recently I was seeing the buzz on the new book “Free” by Chris Anderson.  We at OpenHelix think alot about the public and patented science data, the publishing world, the subscription world, the Open Source world, blogging, and all sorts of stuff related to the availability and costs around these things.  So I wanted very much to read the book, but I hesitated to pay for a book called “Free” for some reason….

Some of the commentary I have see includes this from Andrew Sullivan’s blog:  (Some) Information Wants To Be Free and the review by Malcolm Gladwell in the New Yorker: Priced to Sell   Is free the future?

Last night I was surfing around and saw that the team at The Long Now Foundation has made “Free” available for free for a week.  Runs out soon–get it now if you want it.

The blog post at The Long Now describing this is here:  Free for all (kindle users) And although it says Kindle users (and I wasn’t going to pay $300 to read this book) I found out when I looked that there is a Kindle App for iPhone (which I already had).  So I got the iPhone App from the store and then that kindle version of this.  I’m sure I’m the last person to know about this App, but I really didn’t realize it until last night.

The Long Now is a group I’m getting more and more interested in.  They have a lot of long-term thinkers actively pursuing the future–and not only people that I agree with.   Just this weekend I was reading a report on possible scenarios of the future and a line from the report is buzzing in my head like an ear worm: Prepare for multiple futures. I love that.  I got the membership which provided access to the videos list, and one of the first ones I clicked around was Kevin Kelly’s.  A piece of the summary says this:

  1. There will be more change in the next 50 years of science than in the last 400 years.
  2. This will be a century of biology. It is the domain with the most scientists, the most new results, the most economic value, the most ethical importance, and the most to learn….

Ok, I’m hooked. I’m going to watch that.

I wish I was in San Francisco.  Next week there is a lecture/discussion by Pamela Roland and Raoul Adamchak on their book Tomorrow’s Table on organic farming, genetics, and the future of food.  But I’ll have to settle on the recording or the live stream.

UPDATE: Chris Anderson appeared in the thread over at denialism blog and pointed out that the book is also free on Scribd.