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1951 manual to the first computer game sells for $4,200

A copy of the manual for the first computer game has been sold for £2,500 (around $4,200) by Any Amount of Books in London via AbeBooks. The Ferranti Nimrod Digital Computer Manual is a key piece of technology and gaming history. The game in question is a long way from Minecraft and Angry Birds – it’s […]

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Leporello and Concertina Books

The term leporello refers to printed material folded into an accordion-pleat style. Also sometimes known as a concertina fold, it is a method of parallel folding with the folds alternating between front and back. The name likely comes from the manservant, Leporello, in Mozart’s opera Don Giovanni. Famed rogue and lover Don Giovanni (in Italian […]

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Postcards from Famous Writers

Openculture.com has a post up called Six Postcards From Famous Writers: Hemingway, Kafka, Kerouac & More. It’s a neat collection and worth looking at: Perhaps the most curious and amusing of the cards is the whimsical note F. Scott Fitzgerald wrote to himself. (See above.) Fitzgerald was working as a screenwriter in Hollywood during the […]

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A Late 19th-Century Tulip Catalog

A great part about working in the AbeBooks marketing department is the high number of unique, strange, wonderful books and ephemera I get to see and learn about, that I would almost certainly not come across if I didn’t work here. Today’s find is a late 19th-century tulip catalog. It’s very simple, sure, but totally […]

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Hand painted bookmarks

I recently got a chance to take a small vacation to the west coast of Mexico. My wife and have become big fans of a small town just north of Puerto Vallarta called Sayulita. We really enjoy it because it’s family friendly and touristy enough that we can get around with a small child and […]

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Happy Birthday to Jules Verne, Father of Steampunk

Happy birthday to Jules Verne, born 185 years ago today, on February 8th, 1828. Verne was a French science fiction author, most famous for Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea. His imagination ran just as deep, and throughout his career he contributed immeasurably to the genre of science fiction. He is often called the father […]

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The Antikamnia Chemical Company’s Skeleton Calendars

These are fantastic and I would like to own one. The images come from Antikamnia Skeleton Calendars, put out by the Antikamnia Chemical Company, St. Louis, MO. Antikamnia’s analgesic compound, which was never patented, was marketed as a ‘proudly ethical drug’ and used to treat headaches, fever, stomach aches, nervousness, insomnia and ‘the blues’. It […]

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Board Games for Book Lovers

There are few things I like to do better than play a good game. Rummoli, Texas Hold ‘Em, Charades, Cribbage, Pictionary – you name it, I’ll probably love playing it. And of course it goes without saying that I adore books, so I was happy to find that Flavorwire has a list of 10 Literary […]

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Cool Old Photographs of Albert Einstein

I love this photograph from retronaut of Albert Einstein, holding a marionette puppet of himself. Einstein with Einstein puppet. How delightful (although, full disclosure: I actually think the puppet’s face, from what I can see, bears an even stronger resemblance to Mark Twain than to Einstein). About the image: “Attributed to Harry Burnett while Yale […]

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Book Bricks for the Best Bookends Ever

I know it’s impolite to openly salivate, but I’m only human, and a book nerd can only take so much and keep her cool! Wouldn’t these bricks painted to resemble books make the greatest bookends ever? My shelves have been crying out for these and I didn’t even know. They are the brain-child of an […]

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