Disappointing: DMCA Being Used To Make Feynman Lectures On Physics Less Accessible

from the too-bad dept

I'm going to assume that many of you are familiar with Richard Feynman. If you're not, please get out from under the rock you've been living under and go learn something. While he's probably most well-known in the public for his (not always 100% truthful) collection of stories, Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!, folks of a geekier persuasion are much more aware of his contributions to science and, in particular, the famed Feynman Lectures on Physics. It took way too many years to get those lectures online after (you guessed it) a fight over copyrights. However, online the lectures went and now it appears that publisher Perseus is unfortunately using the DMCA to block attempts to make the works accessible via Kindle or EPUB formats.

Eric Hellman posted the story at the link above, with this being the key part:
Vikram Verma, a software developer in Singapore, wanted to be able to read the lectures on his kindle. Although PDF versions can be purchased at $40 per volume, no versions are yet available in Kindle or EPUB formats. Since the digital format used by kindle is just a simplified version of html, the transformation of web pages to an ebook file is purely mechanical. So Verma proceeded to write a script to do the mechanical transformation – he accomplished the transformation in only 136 lines of ruby code, and published the script as a repository on Github.

Despite the fact that nothing remotely belonging to Perseus or Caltech had been published in Verma's repository, it seems that Perseus and/or Caltech was not happy that people could use Verma's code to easily make ebook files from the website. So they hauled out the favorite weapon of copyright trolls everywhere: a DMCA takedown.
You can see the DMCA here as well as the counternotice, which notes that the software doesn't contain any copyrighted materials (though there's some confusion over who owns the copyright, Caltech or Perseus). Hellman, while admitting he's not a lawyer, further suggests the DMCA takedown is invalid because it's just code... but then further notes that the Feynman Lectures website has put in some code to block the script -- and that Verma has coded around this:
In the meantime, the Feynman Lectures website has taken some steps to break Verma's script. For example, instead of a link to http://www.feynmanlectures.caltech.edu/II_28.html (my favorite chapter), the table of contents now has a link to javascript:Goto(2,18). This will take about 10 minutes for Verma to work around. In addition, the website now has a robot exclusion (except for Googlebot).
Of course, that introduces a new (and unfortunate) problem. As problematic as it is, the anti-circumvention clause of the DMCA, 17 USC 1201 makes it against the law to get around any "technological measure" no matter how stupid or weak, and thus the effort by the website to block it may introduce a new problem, though likely different than what Perseus initially claimed in its takedown.

Making things even more convoluted, the editor of the Feynman Lectures, Michael Gottlieb, jumped into the fray and made things even more confusing and misleading:
The online edition of The Feynman Lectures Website posted at www.feynmanlectures.caltech.edu and www.feynmanlectures.info is free-to-read online. However, it is under copyright. The copyright notice can be found on every page: it is in the footer that your script strips out! The online edition of FLP can not be downloaded, copied or transferred for any purpose (other than reading online) without the written consent of the copyright holders (The California Institute of Technology, Michael A. Gottlieb, and Rudolf Pfeiffer), or their licensees (Basic Books). Every one of you is violating my copyright by running the flp.mobi script. Furthermore Github is committing contributory infringement by hosting your activities on their website. A lot of hard work and money and time went into making the online edition of FLP. It is a gift to the world - one that I personally put a great deal of effort into, and I feel you are abusing it. We posted it to benefit the many bright young people around the world who previously had no access to FLP for economic or other reasons. It isn't there to provide a source of personal copies for a bunch of programmers who can easily afford to buy the books and ebooks!! Let me tell you something: Rudi Pfeiffer and I, who have worked on FLP as unpaid volunteers for about a decade, make no money from the sale of the printed books. We earn something only on the electronic editions (though, of course, not the HTML edition you are raping, to which we give anyone access for free!), and we are planning to make MOBI editions of FLP - we are working on one right now. By publishing the flp.mobi script you are essentially taking bread out of my mouth and Rudi's, a retired guy, and a schoolteacher. Proud of yourselves? That's all I have to say personally. Github has received DMCA takedown notices and if this script doesn't come down pretty soon they (and very possibly you) might be hearing from some lawyers. As of Monday, this matter is in the hands of Perseus's Domestic Rights Department and Caltech's Office of The General Counsel. 

Michael A. Gottlieb
Editor, The Feynman Lectures on Physics New Millennium Edition
www.feynmanlectures.info
www.feynmanlectures.caltech.edu
This is icky on multiple levels. First of all, Gottlieb is engaging in slight copyfraud in overclaiming what his copyright enables him to block. Further it is not necessarily the case that anyone, let alone "everyone" is "violating [Gottlieb's] copyright" merely by running the script. There are plenty of legitimate reasons why running that script may be perfectly legitimate, and legal cases that have suggested place and time shifting content is a legal fair use would certainly come into play here. Furthermore, the argument that Github is somehow contributorily liable is highly questionable, and Gottlieb really ought to talk to a copyright lawyer before making such a leap.

But from there to shift into how important it is to make the work available to the world... just seems strange. If that's the case, why is he freaking out so much?

Either way, the whole situation seems unfortunate, but once again, that's what you get with our crazy copyright law and the DMCA takedown process.

Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

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    rw (profile), Mar 6th, 2014 @ 12:20pm

    huh?

    Why doesn't he USE the script and cut 10 or 20 years off of making it available to everyone?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 6th, 2014 @ 1:41pm

    Its SCIENCE!!!

    There is no way monied interests would ever get in the way of this stuff!

    Real weinners they are!

     

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    edpo, Mar 6th, 2014 @ 1:47pm

    "By publishing the flp.mobi script you are essentially taking bread out of my mouth and Rudi's, a retired guy, and a schoolteacher."
    ________________________

    Why doesn't Gottlieb go and do something productive rather than trying to position himself between learners and the actual teacher and mooch off being that barrier?

     

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    JEDIDIAH, Mar 6th, 2014 @ 2:01pm

    Get some wooden shoes so you can throw them.

    This reminds me of one of my favorite t-shirts:

    "Go Away Or I Will Replace You With A Very Small Shell Script"

     

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    jackn, Mar 6th, 2014 @ 2:20pm

    It is a gift to the world!

    A real gift doesn't have so many strings attached.

     

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    jackn, Mar 6th, 2014 @ 2:22pm

    Man, talk about dum b

    Michael A. Gottlieb

     

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    jackn, Mar 6th, 2014 @ 2:24pm

    This is just another case of a perjuror not being punished.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Mar 6th, 2014 @ 3:24pm

      Re:

      Damn it, where are all of the law trolls when you actually need them? Seriously they're willing to swarm anything lacking legitimacy for money but actually serving the cause of justice by suing the pants off of DMCA abusers? Nooooo! And lawyers wonder why they're hated.

       

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    Anonymous Anonymous Coward, Mar 6th, 2014 @ 3:11pm

    THese must be the coffee table editions of PDF!

    $40 per volume for a PDF?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 6th, 2014 @ 3:33pm

    It's a real pain reading science textbooks, or anything with much scientific notation or diagrams, on Kindles, even the Fire tablets. Maybe they are concerned that screwed up badly formatted content will circulate freely and give the lectures a bad name. Or maybe they have an arrangement with Feynman's estate. Maybe this version is only on the web in the first place as a result of many carefully negotiated arrangements being in place and scraping it risks the whole thing being removed (which would be a Bad Thing). Nothing stopped the guy who wrote the script from asking permission, it would only have been polite and if I owned the content then I think I would prefer to have been asked.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Mar 6th, 2014 @ 4:39pm

      Re:

      I don't need to ask permission to save a web page to my computer and convert it to a different format. Why would I need to do so to make a tool others can use to do exactly this?

      This is a war on efficiency, which proves this isn't a gift. It's a limited trial designed to get in the door, then be just annoying enough that people will pay to upgrade.

       

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      Michael A. Gottlieb, Mar 7th, 2014 @ 1:27am

      you pretty much hit the nail on the head

      See my comment, #18, below.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 6th, 2014 @ 4:24pm

    Rudi Pfeiffer and I, who have worked on FLP as unpaid volunteers for about a decade, make no money from the sale of the printed books. We earn something only on the electronic editions (though, of course, not the HTML edition you are raping, to which we give anyone access for free!), and we are planning to make MOBI editions of FLP - we are working on one right now.


    Raping? RAPING?!?

    Michael A. Gottlieb, you are a miscreant and a fool for misusing the DMCA - but worse - you are an absolute asshat for trivializing rape.

    Jackhole.

    Makes me wanna distribute EPUB / MOBI versions now.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Mar 7th, 2014 @ 8:05pm

      Re:

      Rape has many meanings, whether you like it or not.

       

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        Pragmatic, Mar 11th, 2014 @ 6:33am

        Re: Rape has many meanings

        "You're using work I did without my consent" is not the same as "You're using my body without my consent," but that's what Gottlieb is implying here, hence AC @ 4:24pm's complaint.

         

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    allengarvin (profile), Mar 6th, 2014 @ 5:00pm

    They seem to have a script to block IPs after 85 requests, too. I had to cycle through several of my externals (via --bind-address) to wget it all (I already own the 3 books, but it's nice to have an electronic copy).

     

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    Spaceman Spiff (profile), Mar 6th, 2014 @ 6:25pm

    Feynman's Lectures

    My father was a colleague and good friend of Feynman in the 1940's - he was my babysitter when I was a little baby... I inherited from my father a set of his lecture notes with hand-written notes/comments in the margins, and dedicated to my father. Can I publish them? They are mine by inheritance, and the chain of ownership is clear...

    FWIW, I did purchase around 2000 both of Feynman's "Six Easy Pieces" and "Six Not So Easy Pieces" in book/CD format. A great way to spend a bit of time driving to work (with the audio version at least)!

     

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      Teapot tempest, Mar 7th, 2014 @ 4:30pm

      Re: Feynman's Lectures

      Buying 2000 of them sounds like a lot. Maybe quite a few Saturday afternoons in the park spent reading.
      Perhaps Mr Gottlieb could rent you some sunlight to read the lectures he feels entitled to sell to you and give away to others.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 6th, 2014 @ 8:15pm

    WWFD?

    What Would Feynman Do?

    First, he would bitchslap this asshat Michael Gottlieb for having the unspeakable gall to stand in the way of knowledge, education and science. Why don't you try to lock up Einstein and da Vinci, Newton and Hawking while you're at it?

    Second, he would seed the entire collection (in HTML and PDF and EPUB and MOBI formats) in a torrent.

    Third, he'd fold his arms in quiet satisfaction and silently dare any onlooker to do something about it.

    Since Feynman isn't here, it appears that someone must do this for him.

     

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    Cpt Feathersword, Mar 7th, 2014 @ 12:03am

    How did Feynman's copyrights fall into the hands of Gottlieb and Pfeiffer?

    Did Feynman donate his copyrights to the noble cause of putting bread into the mouths of these two worthies? They must be fine fellows indeed if Feynman thought so highly of them.

     

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    Len Brown, Mar 7th, 2014 @ 1:09am

    A Gift To The World?

    It is a gift to the world - one that I personally put a great deal of effort into, and I feel you are abusing it.


    A gift to the world so long as you hold the gift while we read it? A gift is something GIVEN, not something loaned. If this is a true gift, package the sucker up DRM-free and let us just download it. Anything else is nothing less than an indian-giver control-freak.

     

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    Michael A. Gottlieb, Mar 7th, 2014 @ 1:21am

    There are many reasons we don't want people to publish the flp.mobi script (or others like it) on a public server, besides those mentioned in the 'issue' I posted on Github. There are issues of quality control: the online edition of FLP isn't finished yet -- it's still rough around the edges in some ways, and we're still working on it. For that matter we are still correcting errata in FLP, and we don't want inaccurate, incompatible copies of FLP to proliferate for pedagogical reasons. Moreover, we downloaded and ran the flp.mobi script and the epub it makes is, in our opinion, ugly. We wouldn't want this barely legible copy of FLP circulating any more than the horrid PDF scans of ancient editions that abound in torrents. In my "issue" on Github I mentioned that we are currently working on ePub/Kindle versions. The reason it is taking us so long to complete them is because our standards are high: it's taking a lot of cleverness to figure out how to do it right. (It's only too bad the programmers who are contributing to flp.mobi did not come to us and ask our permission, because if they had, I would have worked with them. That is, in fact, exactly what has happened: A responsible adult, who happens to be a much more talented programmer than the authors of flp.mobi, wrote to me and asked permission if he could make an ePub from our HTML. I told him about the various attempts to make FLP ePubs, why they had failed thus far, and invited him to do better. And he has!! So now he is working with us. If we publish his work he'll, of course, be paid for it. That's what you get for asking :-). However, the issue that concerns me most is the possibility that Perseus or Caltech might take the free-to-read online edition of FLP offline if the legal expense of defending its copyright becomes excessive. Perseus, who licenses exclusive reproduction and distribution rights on FLP, allow us to serve the free online edition only conditionally, if it doesn't hurt their sales revenues or cost them anything otherwise.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Mar 7th, 2014 @ 3:04am

      Re:

      However, the issue that concerns me most is the possibility that Perseus or Caltech might take the free-to-read online edition of FLP offline if the legal expense of defending its copyright becomes excessive.

      Are you 5 years old? "I'll take my ball and go home unless you play with it THE WAY THAT I SAY".

      The actual cost of defending the copyright is zero, because it's a complete unnecessary exercise in self-righteousness and arrogance, performed solely to satiate your outrageous sense of entitlement and your bloated ego.

      Feynman does not belong to you. Feynman does not belong to Perseus. Feynman does not belong to Caltech. None of you are worthy of that privilege, as your own words clearly demonstrate. You are little men with little minds, focused on your own self-importance instead of making sure the fruit of Feynman's genius and hard work is available to everyone.

      Maybe you should have paid better attention to Feynman and tried to understand his passion for teaching. I did. And I know that he would never sanction this nonsense: if he was here in 2014 observing what you'd done, he'd be the first to pirate his own work.

       

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        art guerrilla (profile), Mar 7th, 2014 @ 6:55am

        Re: Re:

        thank you, anon @3:04...
        this guy reeks of entitlement and the arrogance of ownership of SOMEONE ELSE'S works, who would admire *what* he was doing to his works, but NOT *HOW* he is doing it...

        i'm hating on the guy already, and if i can find a way to make his life more miserable, i'll take the opportunity...

        'quality control' my ass, it is ALL about control, period...
        another gatekeeper who is doing this ALL for the childrens... *snort*

         

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      That One Guy (profile), Mar 7th, 2014 @ 4:32am

      Re:

      If the issue was one of quality, it would seem the better choice of action once you were aware of the script would have been to get in touch with the developer, work with them in making it better and the result more polished, not jump straight to trying to shut it down.

      Should they have asked you before throwing something like that out? Yeah, probably so, however, the fact that they bothered to go through the trouble to throw it together indicates a strong interest in the subject matter, so I'd say they likely would have been willing to listen and work with you had you approached them with a reasonable offer to work together on it, rather than just trying to get it pulled.

      Filing what for all intents appears to be a bogus DMCA claim(unless you're going to claim that you have the rights to the script in question, then it would appear you lack the valid claim needed to file to have it taken down) first just indicates a willingness, and eagerness, to go legal, rather than take a more measured approach.

      Now, as to the last point, while your concern there is certainly valid, again, you almost certainly would have been better off getting in contact with the developer of the script, explaining your issues regarding quality and the worry about it possibly being pulled, and asked them to work with you, or at least explain your concerns and ask them to stop, rather than going legal so quickly.

      People and companies these days seem to bring out the lawyers way too quickly, when often a more measured, reasonable and personal discussion would be far more productive, both in getting things done, and on the PR front.

       

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      Shay, Mar 7th, 2014 @ 10:39pm

      Re:

      There are many reasons we don't want people to publish the flp.mobi script (or others like it) on a public server, besides those mentioned in the 'issue' I posted on Github. There are issues of quality control: the online edition of FLP isn't finished yet -- it's still rough around the edges in some ways, and we're still working on it. For that matter we are still correcting errata in FLP, and we don't want inaccurate, incompatible copies of FLP to proliferate for pedagogical reasons. Moreover, we downloaded and ran the flp.mobi script and the epub it makes is, in our opinion, ugly. We wouldn't want this barely legible copy of FLP circulating any more than the horrid PDF scans of ancient editions that abound in torrents.

      So anyone who doesn't do things your way gets the law thrown at them?
      In my "issue" on Github I mentioned that we are currently working on ePub/Kindle versions. The reason it is taking us so long to complete them is because our standards are high: it's taking a lot of cleverness to figure out how to do it right.

      Best is the enemy of good enough.
      (It's only too bad the programmers who are contributing to flp.mobi did not come to us and ask our permission, because if they had, I would have worked with them. That is, in fact, exactly what has happened: A responsible adult, who happens to be a much more talented programmer than the authors of flp.mobi, wrote to me and asked permission if he could make an ePub from our HTML. I told him about the various attempts to make FLP ePubs, why they had failed thus far, and invited him to do better. And he has!! So now he is working with us. If we publish his work he'll, of course, be paid for it. That's what you get for asking :-).

      So because they didn't act like adults and ask you for permission, you threw the law at them? Sounds more like you want them to act like children with you being the authoritarian parent. Since you espouse being a responsible adult, why didn't you politely contact them and explain your desires for the conversion effort and see whether you all could work together, or whether it made more sense for you each to try your own approaches and see what end-users prefer?
      However, the issue that concerns me most is the possibility that Perseus or Caltech might take the free-to-read online edition of FLP offline if the legal expense of defending its copyright becomes excessive.

      That's an easy one: don't bring legal action against people writing the script. No legal costs. This isn't a trademark issue where one has to defend it or lose it.
      Perseus, who licenses exclusive reproduction and distribution rights on FLP, allow us to serve the free online edition only conditionally, if it doesn't hurt their sales revenues or cost them anything otherwise.

      But somehow if you make and release a free version for portable use it won't run into these problems?

       

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      Slicerwizard, Mar 7th, 2014 @ 11:57pm

      Reverse course!!

      There are many reasons we don't want people to publish the flp.mobi script (or others like it) on a public server, besides those mentioned in the 'issue' I posted on Github. There are issues of quality control

      My, how quickly the party line shifts when Ms. Streisand shows up. What happened to all the raping? Now we're supposed to believe that you stooped to legal threats primarily over "quality control"?


      A responsible adult, who happens to be a much more talented programmer than the authors of flp.mobi, wrote to me and asked permission if he could make an ePub from our HTML. I told him about the various attempts to make FLP ePubs, why they had failed thus far, and invited him to do better. And he has!! So now he is working with us. If we publish his work he'll, of course, be paid for it. That's what you get for asking :-).

      Oh wait, now you're back to "Everyone has to pay us!"

      Ok, I think your true motivation is coming through clearly now.

       

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      ldne, Mar 8th, 2014 @ 5:32am

      Re:

      There are many reasons we don't want people to publish the flp.mobi script (or others like it) on a public server,

      That's just it fella, you didn't write that script so you don't get to tell the writer where they can and can't publish it. Whether or not you like/approve of what it does is irrelevant, it's not yours. Now, if you want to try to track down someone using it on the site and hit them for going around you're blocks that's your prerogative as the copyright holder of the material the script downloads. Since you do not own a copyright on the script, sending them a DMCA takedown notice on the script itself is illegal.

       

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    Michael A. Gottlieb, Mar 7th, 2014 @ 2:19am

    Who the HECK are Gottlieb and Pfeiffer, anyway?

    See Kip Thorne's Preface to The Feynman Lectures on Physics New Millennium Edition

    http://www.feynmanlectures.caltech.edu/I_90.html

    and John Preskill's 9/21/13 Quantum Frontiers blog posting, "Free Feynman"

    http://quantumfrontiers.com/2013/09/21/free-feynman/ .

     

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      Thank you, Mar 7th, 2014 @ 5:54am

      Re: Who the HECK are Gottlieb and Pfeiffer, anyway?

      Thank you for your work, and indeed to all involved in bringing the lectures to the internet. It is a wonderful project.

       

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        art guerrilla (profile), Mar 7th, 2014 @ 7:05am

        Re: Re: Who the HECK are Gottlieb and Pfeiffer, anyway?

        i DON'T thank them: SOMEONE else who didn't have the possessive attitude of these dickheads WOULD HAVE DONE IT 'RIGHT', and when i say 'right', i don't mean whatever idiotic 'high quality' bullshit these guys claim, I MEAN FREE TO DISTRIBUTE...
        are those idiots going to maintain that feynman would have wanted it done THEIR way, INSTEAD OF SETTING THAT INFORMATION FREE ? ? ? bullshit...

        SO WHAT someone makes a 'pirate copy' that has errors, etc, SO FUCKING WHAT: THEN they will 'reject' that pirate copy and go to your super-high quality version, won't they ? ? ?

        EXCEPT THEY WON'T, because the 'low' quality will be GOOD ENOUGH for 99% of the people 99% of the time...

        YOU GUYS ARE THE ROADBLOCKS, NOT THE FACILITATORS...

        no, these kreeps got their talons in something far greater than themselves, and are riding those dead coattails as THEIR EXCLUSIVE JOB, not anyone else's...

        ...the proof is the over-reaching and immediate repressive instincts... dicks

         

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    gluejar (profile), Mar 7th, 2014 @ 6:47am

    flp.mobi is coming down

    I posted an update on my piece, linked in the story- The developer of flp.mobi is voluntarily taking the repo down, out of fear that Caltech/Perseus will take down the free website.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Mar 7th, 2014 @ 3:20pm

      Re: flp.mobi is coming down

      So he gave into threats from that worthless douchebag Gottlieb, who isn't even worthy of wiping Feynman's ass. What a pity.

      It appears to be time to liberate Feynman's work, and fuck Caltech, fuck Perseus, and especially fuck Gottlieb.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Mar 8th, 2014 @ 8:00am

      Re: flp.mobi is coming down

      "feynmanlectures.caltech.edu is down for maintenance. We hope to be back up soon. Sorry for the inconvenience."

       

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      chilli, Feb 27th, 2015 @ 3:21am

      Re: flp.mobi is coming down

      Don't worry, I (and many other's I'm sure) have already downloaded a full copy of the website. It's a simple bash script really and you can do it too. If it ever gets taken down, I would personally host it for everyone for free.

      #! /bin/bash

      wget --limit-rate=1000k -nc --wait=5 -e robots=off -p -U Mozilla "http://www.feynmanlectures.caltech.edu/"
      wget --limit-rate=1000k -nc --wait=5 -e robots=off -p -U Mozilla "http://www.feynmanlectures.caltech.edu/I_toc.html"
      wget --limit-rate=1000k -nc --wait=5 -e robots=off -p -U Mozilla "http://www.feynmanlectures.caltech.edu/II_toc.html"
      wget --limit-rate=1000k -nc --wait=5 -e robots=off -p -U Mozilla "http://www.feynmanlectures.caltech.edu/III_toc.html"
      wget --limit-rate=1000k -nc --wait=5 -e robots=off -p -U Mozilla "http://www.feynmanlectures.caltech.edu/I_toc_sc.html"
      wget --limit-rate=1000k -nc --wait=5 -e robots=off -p -U Mozilla "http://www.feynmanlectures.caltech.edu/II_toc_sc.html"
      wget --limit-rate=1000k -nc --wait=5 -e robots=off -p -U Mozilla "http://www.feynmanlectures.caltech.edu/III_toc_sc.html"
      wget --limit-rate=1000k -nc --wait=5 -e robots=off -p -U Mozilla "http://www.feynmanlectures.caltech.edu/buy.html"
      wget --limit-rate=1000k -nc --wait=5 -e robots=off -p -U Mozilla "http://www.feynmanlectures.caltech.edu/I_copyright.html"
      wget --limit-rate=1000k -nc --wait=5 -e robots=off -p -U Mozilla "http://www.feynmanlectures.caltech.edu/II_copyright.html"
      wget --limit-rate=1000k -nc --wait=5 -e robots=off -p -U Mozilla "http://www.feynmanlectures.caltech.edu/III_copyright.html"

      for i in {01..52}; do
      wget --limit-rate=1000k -nc --wait=5 -e robots=off -p -U Mozilla "http://www.feynmanlectures.caltech.edu/I_""$i"".html"
      done

      for i in {01..42}; do
      wget --limit-rate=1000k -nc --wait=5 -e robots=off -p -U Mozilla "http://www.feynmanlectures.caltech.edu/II_""$i"".html"
      done

      for i in {01..22}; do
      wget --limit-rate=1000k -nc --wait=5 -e robots=off -p -U Mozilla "http://www.feynmanlectures.caltech.edu/III_""$i"".html"
      done

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Mar 7th, 2014 @ 8:00am

    That is disappointing.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    edpo, Mar 7th, 2014 @ 1:26pm

    Gottlieb the Terrible

    "A responsible adult, who happens to be a much more talented programmer than the authors of flp.mobi..."
    _______________________

    You sound like a real jerk, which is funny since you are depending on folk's good will to feed you.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Andy, Mar 7th, 2014 @ 3:43pm

    bill gates

    didnt i read that bill gates had somethiung to do with purchasing licences to make them available online ?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Mar 7th, 2014 @ 6:11pm

    Calibre anyone ? Ever tried it ?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Iva Gotnowitz, Mar 8th, 2014 @ 8:46am

    copyright resurrection

    Since additional value is being added to the FLP, a legitimate claim to copyright on the new versions surely exists.

    That said, I think Caltech can generate tremendous goodwill by being as liberal as possible with their licensing terms.

    IANAL, but a functioning brain is all that's required.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    icon
    Rapnel (profile), Mar 8th, 2014 @ 8:48am

    Unfortunate

    The disappointing aspect of all of this is that through a simple script such as this the works would have been disseminated far and wide and this could only generate more interest. Through "poor" quality offerings that cost nothing works like these find a wider audience. Wider audiences generate more interest and, in some cases, a desire for both higher quality materials and more works, refined and raw. These, in turn, generate thought, discussion, ideas and, in the end, more creations.

    Mr. Gottlieb has clearly failed to recognize pure opportunity due to a misguided sense of ownership entitlement to works that are not his own. A far, far too common stance by those that would believe that the rent is more valuable than the work. Greed and self-interest is what that is and this while hiding behind the espoused virtues of protecting the creators, protecting the creations and protecting an income unearned.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Mar 8th, 2014 @ 9:00am

    I'm going to assume that many of you are familiar with Richard Feynman. If you're not, please get out from under the rock you've been living under and go learn something.

    ^ Nerds are dicks.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Mar 8th, 2014 @ 11:11am

    Got any other feet you wanna shoot?

    At about 82 MB with around 70 seeds, it takes a little more than 1 minute to torrent the existing PDF version. Thanks for Streisanding your new HTML publication...wouldn't have thought to look otherwise.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Snowboarder, Mar 8th, 2014 @ 8:14pm

    disgusting comments

    I've just gone through these comments and one thing and one thing only stands out: you want the efforts of someone else for free. And if you can't have it for free you whine and cry about it.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Mar 9th, 2014 @ 12:29am

      Re: disgusting comments

      As opposed to Gottlieb and Pfeiffer who wish to make a fortune off of the works of others.

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Mar 9th, 2014 @ 11:19am

      Re: disgusting comments

      Don't look now but they were already free.

      You're going to have to take this tired old argument to someplace where people are as tired and old as you are.

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      identicon
      chilli, Feb 27th, 2015 @ 3:23am

      Re: disgusting comments

      Um - no - Gottlieb hardly put any effort into this. It was Feynman who put in the effort. Gottlieb could have made it open source and the wider community would have put all the required effort in.

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    yoyoyo, Jul 11th, 2014 @ 7:26pm

    I was going to buy the book, but after reading the comments by this idiot, I will not do it. Of course I will read it, but not giving money to an asshole.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    chilli, Feb 27th, 2015 @ 3:18am

    If the asshole Gottlieb made the book free for the open source community to modify and submit pull requests to, the quality of the website and the PDF/ebooks would be far higher than anything he has produced so far. The collective effort of thousands of coders to improve the quality of presentation of the lectures would outstrip Gottlieb's sorry ass efforts.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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