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Eric Weisstein's MathWorld is Back

By PCII in MLP
Wed Nov 07, 2001 at 04:00:37 PM EST
Tags: News (all tags)
News

After one of the most complicated and wierd copyright cases I can remember, CRC Press has let up on Weisstein. His invaluable and amazing reference tool is back online at http://mathworld.wolfram.com. Check out the press release here. Note: Unfortunately, it's somewhat slashdotted right now


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Eric Weisstein's MathWorld is Back | 27 comments (6 topical, 21 editorial, 0 hidden)
Yes, I know it's MLP (4.75 / 4) (#8)
by aphrael on Tue Nov 06, 2001 at 05:08:02 PM EST

but a little more text explaining the background of the case --- enough to give me the information i'd need to decide if i was interested in clicking the slashdotted link or not --- would be really helpful. :)

Tainted (4.00 / 1) (#13)
by antizeus on Tue Nov 06, 2001 at 06:37:34 PM EST

I've got nothing but love (or perhaps a less intense but still positive feeling) for Eric Weisstein and his work, but I feel that the project has been irredeemably tainted by the CRC fiasco. Read Eric's commentary, especially the part about his latest deal with CRC, for details.

What we REALLY need is a fresh start -- an online database without any lingering ties to CRC or any other greedy dead-tree publisher. Also, it should be more wiki-like and dynamic. One of my IRC buddies is developing such a database right now, and I've contributed a little material to it. I'm tempted to give a URL, but it's not ready for prime time yet, and it's really up to him to make an announcement (hi glasnost).
-- $SIGNATURE

the site in question... (5.00 / 1) (#19)
by glasnost on Wed Nov 07, 2001 at 12:31:53 AM EST

The site is planetmath.org, for those who want to take a look around, and perhaps help debug/get the collection started. In fact, if anyone has time and could help do the coding (its in perl), your services would be welcome. I have basically written the whole thing myself and it has been slow going, as I have many commitments.

Hop on #planetmath on endernet (irc.endernet.org) to hang out with the crew if you're interested.

[ Parent ]
Wooo-hoooo!!!!!!!!!!!! (4.00 / 1) (#14)
by CaptainZornchugger on Tue Nov 06, 2001 at 07:27:38 PM EST

/me does extended dance of joy

And, um, that's all I have to say.


Look at that chord structure. There's sadness in that chord structure.
Read the full explanation (5.00 / 4) (#15)
by Delirium on Tue Nov 06, 2001 at 07:56:54 PM EST

here. This is hardly a win; it's just not a complete loss. Basically they settled with some rather onerous conditions; in addition to paying the publishing company royalties for having his own website up (and thus "hurting sales"), he has to give the publishing company unlimited rights to publish the website's future work, and thus cannot accept contributions from people who don't sign the publishing company's agreement.

Not really a 'win' (none / 0) (#20)
by autopr0n on Wed Nov 07, 2001 at 07:22:08 AM EST

As others have mentioned, it isn't really a 'win' for them.

I wonder what would happen if the earlier contributors tried to sue CRC. At this point, I think Eric et al would probably have to reproduce the originals. But it doesn't seem like Eric really had the right to license other people's work like that...

On the other hand, he was pretty much a moron for signing that release. It's pretty clear what CRC's terms are. I don't think I'd ever sign something like that and expect not to be rapped on account of their 'niceness'.


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Eric Weisstein's MathWorld is Back | 27 comments (6 topical, 21 editorial, 0 hidden)
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