[KS] DB of Korean Classics

Frank Hoffmann hoffmann at koreaweb.ws
Wed Jan 18 18:21:44 EST 2012

The posting did not include any link, did not include any detailed 
problem description whatsoever other than stating that there are 
problems using some online sources on a Mac. (What OS version 
exactly, all? Trying to do what? Reading texts seems not a problem, 
given you talk about http://db.itkc.or.kr.)

The first step should in such a case *always* be to contact the site 
owner and to describe exactly, and with an example, what the problem 
is. Instead it is being asked, on this Korean studies list (not this 
hacker discussion list), how to "harvest **all** the material" that a 
Korean institution in many years of collaborative labor put up there. 
Most obviously, the Internet is about sharing knowledge, but not so 
much about stealing :)

Technical note:
As far as I can see -- please explain if there are other functions -- 
one can freely go to any munjip or sillok text and then have that 
displayed, paragraph by paragraph, or page by page, in those two 
sources I looked into. Texts are being blended in in TEXT format from 
a database (as the title of that entire site already suggests) -- 
that is not any scanned image of a text, not PDF or similar format 
either. A database consists of plain TEXT format. (Well, there are 
now also image data bases, but this one seems to be a TEXT database.) 
You therefore cannot "copy" a full text, as this text does not exist 
as such full text--the text of a document only exist as a cut-up 
version, whereby each paragraph is located in separate data fields. 
Just imagine an Excel spread sheet, and then think of all paragraphs 
of text being put into different entry fields there ... and later you 
click on e.g. B 137 and you get one of those paragraphs being 
displayed in a window in your webbrowser, while the data base itself 
is in the background, is not even located in the same folder (maybe 
even on a different server for security) as the website you look at. 
This is then exactly what the website owners wanted, they wanted to 
protect their work, while at the same time allowing LIMITED public 
access, just not allow to download the whole package and then 
possibly do something else with it (e.g. put it on some other 

*If* there are ways to download entire munjip or sillok in one 
file--I did not see that, but as I said, I am usually not working 
with classical texts; please point out where and how this is supposed 
to be done. Technically, this would then be different files than the 
ones you see while reading through a text paragraph by paragraph or 
page by page. If there is such a function, then maybe the site is 
using a Korean altered version of PDF (by now long outdated and 
completely unnecessary, in a technical sense, and this would likely 
require Microsoft's "ActiveX" which is not available for the Mac, and 
it was also discontinued by Microsoft years ago). But I would only 
know after having seen what they have there, and I didn't see 
anything. Can you post a description of a SAMPLE search or download 
attempt, so others can see what problems you have?

Frank Hoffmann

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