I see, via an article in today’s Guardian, that the British Library, in conjuction with Microsoft, has released a new version of the browser application that enables you to read its most glorious books online. This version requires you to have Windows Vista, and a graphics card that is capable of running the Aero interface.
I have to say that the results are stunning. Looking at the Luttrell Psalter, for example, is a revelation. As you turn the pages, you can see the sheen on the gold leaf wax and wane. And you can move the book in three dimensions to show how the light catches the pigment on the pages.
For those of us without Vista and Aero, there is also a Shockwave version of the application, but this is very dull by comparison. The Psalter, for example, has none of the richness of colour that shines through in the Vista version. This application gives a glimpse of the sort of user interfaces that are likely to be emerging on Vista over the next couple of years. Impressive.