NLM has just released an iPad app featuring Turning the Pages: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/turning-the-pages-ttp/id423830194?mt=8. The application is free and features selections from three rare books from the Library’s collection. All three books first appeared on NLM’s Turning the pages kiosks and website over the past three years: http://archive.nlm.nih.gov/proj/ttp/books.htm. The new app allows iPad users to have an up-close virtual experience with these rare treasures; the animated books scanned at high resolution are accompanied by curatorial text written by experts in their fields which put the books and images into context.
The books featured include a Japanese surgical manuscript dating from the early 19th century by noted physician Hanaoka Seishu, the first surgeon to use anesthesia in an operation. Another book included in the app is Hieronymus Brunschwig’s De Arte Distillandi, printed in Strasbourg in 1512, which contains numerous hand colored woodcuts showing physicians, alchemists, and their laboratories in Early Modern Europe. The third book is an early Persian manuscript by medieval natural historian al-Qazwini entitled “The Cosmography,” which includes colorful hand-drawn illustrations of zodiac constellations, animals, and plants from the Islamic world of the period.
Launched at NLM in 2001, Turning the Pages is part of a continuing collaboration between NLM’s Lister Hill National Center for Biomedical Communications and the History of Medicine Division.