Our books, arranged by Hue and Lightness

Sunday afternoons were made for doing this kind of thing…
Book drop
(click here for the biggest version)
Several thousand of our books, arranged vertically by hue and horizontally by lightness. The value was calculated by finding the average colour of the book cover and then converting that to the relevant HSL value. There’s a little bit of randomness thrown in too, in terms of rotation and position. The image was created using Perl and ImageMagick.
If nothing else, it shows that we have more red and blue books than green or pink ones!

Reshelve all your books by the colour of their spine

Thanks to Iman for jogging my memory about this blog post which I’d been meaning to blog about for the last couple of weeks — in fact, I was chatting to someone after the ARCLib Conference in Liverpool last week about it, but couldn’t remember the name of the library for the life in me (it’s the Emily Carr University Library)…

The above was a senior grad project by Valérie Madill and you can find further details here: “Looking at Libraries: Defining Space Through Content“.
During my ARCLib presentation (which bizarrely ended up as a featured slideshow on the slideshare home page!?!), I mentioned the book shop in San Francisco that Chris Cobb famously rearranged by colour (see Flickr)…

I must briefly mention that the last session of the conference was given by Stephanie Davies of laughology.co.uk. I don’t think I’ve ever laughed so much at a library conference 😀
liverpool_009
Just in case anyone didn’t believe me that there’s a web page with a list of dirty library words, it’s here!
I’m itching to do something cool on one of our library’s plasma screens and I was wondering about hooking it up to a webcam and doing something like this, but using book cover thumbnails instead of the square blocks of colour?
me
I think I’ve still got the code I used to creating the “librarians as books” kicking around somewhere…
helene3_1024

Visual virtual shelf browsing

The Zoomii web site seems to be getting a lot of attention at the moment, so I got wondering how easy/difficult it would be do to a virtual bookshelf in the OPAC…
bookshelf
It’s definitely a “crappy prototype” at the moment, and the trickiest thing turned out to be getting the iframe to jump to the middle (where, hopefully, the book you’re currently browsing is shown). Anyway, you can see it in action on our OPAC.
I suspect the whole thing would work much better in Flash and it would look really cool if it used a Mac “dock” style effect. I wonder if I can persuade Iman to conjure up some Flash? 😉

Book covers, revisited

Just spotted that Tim is busy working on something that I dabbled with last February:
www.colourphon.co.uk
I’m actually in the midst of revisiting my code, as I want to automate a way of locating visually similar images from the “1000 Frames of Hitchcock” project, e.g.:
Blackmail (1929)Easy Virtue (1928)The Pleasure Garden (1925)Downhill (1927)Jamaica Inn (1939)Rebecca (1940)Number Seventeen (1932)Jamaica Inn (1939)
Anyway, today seemed like a good opportunity to return to Ed Vielmetti‘s original question about sorting books into the colour of a rainbow
rainbow