Amazon.com is in the process of digitizing 120,000 books, and making the FULL TEXT searchable online. The kicker? You can't access the entire book digitally…just the pages that are returned for your search. This is in an attempt to increase the utility of their commercial venture. So….it could be better, but the utility will still be incredible.
Full story from Wired….here's an excerpt:
“Amazon's Alexandrian scheme hinges on the insight that physical books can be turned into electronic databases and then – in the retail process – turned back into physical books. This is one of the boldest maneuvers yet in an intense commercial competition, but for all its cunning, this is a civilized, even civilizing war, one that builds libraries rather than burns them. “