Rumor has is that the iBookstore will be preloaded with 30,000 free Project Gutenberg eBooks. If true, this could mean you wouldn’t have to go searching for free eBooks, or worry about how to get them on to your iPad next week when the iPad launches.
If you’re scratching your head as to what Project Gutenberg is, then let me explain. It’s an online library that offers digital copies of public domain eBooks for free. You can get books like Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Pride and Prejudice, Huckleberry Finn, etc. The project currently has over 30,000 titles available, and App Advice says that Apple has decided to include the entire catalog on the iBookstore.
The iPad supports the ePub eBook format, which is an open standard already used by numerous online libraries including Project Gutenberg. But having it available right in the iBookstore is great news for everyone. I’m going to assume this rumor is true since it’s a great way for iPad owners to “test drive” the iBookstore and later come back to buy new books. Needless to say, this is probably the only way Apple is going to get many iPad owners, myself included, to read a book instead of browse Wikipedia or the rest of the internet.