Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Free Flatland!

Edwin Abbot's book, Flatland, is out of copyright since it was published in 1884. So I wondered if the text could be found online for free.

It can. Here. You have to scroll past a long list of disclaimers to get there.

The ASCII representations of the diagrams are not great, but the text is there, including his (possibly overdone) discussion of life as a Flatlander. It's not a long book, though.

Personally, I don't like reading online for long periods. I prefer the real book, not least because some of the diagrams are necessary, and they're much better on paper. For those who can stand to stare at a screen, the book's now free.


Southern Writer said...

Cool! Thanks, Rom! I do 90% of my reading online (editing people's books, critiquing, writing my own novels), so it won't bother me a bit. That was nice of you!

Victor Allen Winters said...

Rom - Found this on a blog I frequent (lurk). Thought you might be interested. (I am tempted to believe, but I want a second opinion from someone more familiar with these phenomena than me)


Romulus Crowe said...

SW - I thought it might be a good idea to put that up. The text is from 1884 so it's not what everyone would think of as a 'light read'. You might notice they didn't have political correctness back then, either, so when you bristle at lines like 'even a woman could...', remember I didn't write it, I just read it!

Victor - it's actually very common. Children have a much wider range of hearing than adults, and they are much more accepting of things like a dead relative calling in to say hello. Adult brains become more logical as they age, and (I think) refuse to see things that disagree with what they know to be fact, and react with panic when those facts are challenged. A ghost can send a roomful of burly men screaming in terror, but a two-year-old child would more likely wander over and say hello.

I'm certain that at least some of those childhood invisible friends aren't completely figments of the imagination.

Victor Allen Winters said...

That was where I was leaning; it just never happened to me. Thanks.

Southern Writer said...

"Even a woman could ..." huh? I don't take offense to that at all. I think men are naturally better at math and science, and women are better at everything else. Seems like a fair trade.

Romulus Crowe said...

I think men are naturally better at math and science, and women are better at everything else.

But... nothing else matters ;)

Anonymous said...

But... nothing else matters ;)
ummm TO MEN that is!
except, of course, female anatomy....

Southern Writer said...

Ha! You go, Anon!

Rom, you are so trying to goad me into an argument. Well, come on. Put 'em up. I'll bet I can name ten other things you consider important besides science or math.

Romulus Crowe said...

Goad? Me? Never!

It's a challenge though. I can't think of ten other things that are important, besides science.

What can they be?

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