INTERNET SEARCH OUTFIT Google has published the ancient texts of the Dead Sea Scrolls online.
The firm has published the Biblical scriptures and is offering them in a searchable format. Presumably this book is not aimed at casual e-book readers but rather scholars and the like.
"It's taken 24 centuries, the work of archaeologists, scholars and historians, and the advent of the Internet to make the Dead Sea Scrolls accessible to anyone in the world," said the company in a blog post.
"Today, as the new year approaches on the Hebrew calendar, we're celebrating the launch of the Dead Sea Scrolls online; a project of The Israel Museum, Jerusalem powered by Google technology."
The Dead Sea Scrolls have a long history and placing them on the internet is a bit of a change of scene for them. Back in 68BC they were lurking in caves in the Judean desert, and there they stayed until 1947. Although they have been on display for over 40 years this is the first time that they have been made publicly available, at least to people not living in or visiting Israel.
"Now, anyone around the world can view, read and interact with five digitized Dead Sea Scrolls. The high resolution photographs are up to 1,200 megapixels, almost 200 times more than the average consumer camera, so viewers can see even the most minute details in the parchment," added Google.
"The scroll text is also discoverable via web search. If you search for phrases from the scrolls, a link to that text within the scroll viewers on the Dead Sea Scrolls collections site may surface in your search results." µ