Friday, December 4, 2009

20 Chapters now available on free BookOnBrowser

I just activated Chapter 20 of the free BookOnBrowser, multimedia version of Ordinary Heroes: Six Stars in the Window.

This is the chapter where Carl "Art" Koski and the 332nd Engineers land on Utah Beach (some days after D-Day) and being restoration of Cherbourg Harbor.

Try it now, free, right in your browser!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Updates to Ordinary Heroes BookOnBrowser

Over the past weeks, we've been migrating the BookOnBrowser products to the new ASP-based server.

The free BookOnBrowser currently includes the first 18 chapters of the book, with videos and Web links.

If you haven't yet tried the BookOnBrowser version, you should check it out at:

Sunday, October 18, 2009

BookOnBrowser version of Ordinary Heroes

I've been gradually activating additional chapters of Ordinary Heroes: Six Stars of the Window in the multimedia BookOnBrowser format, which includes the video clips and Web links found on the BookOnCD and BookOnDownload versions.

Currently 19 of 68 chapters are available in the free BookOnBrowser--almost 1/3 of the book!

If you haven't tried it yet, give it a try--right in your browser.

It will run on most Mac and Windows computers as well as the iPhone, iTouch, and many Linux systems.

For immediate access to the complete multimedia product, try the BookOnDownload or just insert the BookOnCD (bound in the front cover of the hard cover book) and click Help/Pay for this product to complete the online payment of just $4.95 to access the entire product right from the CD.

This BookOnBrowser uses the same advanced technology developed for use with our best-selling college computer textbooks, including New Perspectives on Computer Concepts.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Interview picked up on Reader Views

The interview with Authors Access is also now available at Reader Views. Stop by to check it out! ;-)

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Beyond the Printed Page, an online interview with Dan Oja

I recently participated in an online interview for Authors Access with Victor R. Volkman and Tyler R. Tichelaar. The interview focused primarily on digital publishing and Ordinary Heroes: Six Stars in the Window. Click here to listen in on the interview.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Farewell to a friend

Marilyn Kahl, long-term supporter of the 10th Mountain Infantry Division veteran's and descendant's organizations, recently passed away. She was a tireless organizer--one of those people who filled each day to the brim. She will be missed by all who knew her, including the 10th Mountain Infantry Division veterans and descendants from the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.

Friday, May 15, 2009

James Orwig's 90th Birthday

I just received a note from James Orwig's daughter, Peggy, regarding his 90th birthday, which will be on May 30th.

If you've read Ordinary Heroes: Six Stars in the Window, you know the significant role that James Orwig played in the book and in the life of John Leslie Koski. But if you haven't met him in person, you may not know what an extraordinary man he is. He truly is a gentleman and a scholar, a soldier and a philosopher, an educator and a writer. He is a great American and a significant person.

I am very grateful to have known him and am honored that I was able to play some part in documenting his service to our country.

I hope you will join me in offering my best wishes to James Orwig on his 90th birthday.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

New 2nd-generation BookOnBrowser

We've recently upgraded the free, Web-serialized BookOnBrowser version of Ordinary Heroes to run in the new, 2nd generation BookOnBrowser system. This is the most sophisticated Web-based publishing system available today. And, you can try it today, for free, right in your browser! ;-)

Click here to try the BookOnBrowser version of Ordinary Heroes: Six Stars in the Window or a sample of the best-selling computer textbook, New Perspectives on Computer Concepts, 2010.

Monday, April 13, 2009

April 15th

As we approach another April 15th, my thoughts turn once again to those young men who sacrificed so much to help save the world from tyranny during World War II.

I am so grateful for those young soldiers and what they did for all of us. Our world would be a much darker place if they had not lived.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

iPhone and iTouch versions of BookOnBrowser

You're reading Ordinary Heroes on an iPhone?

If you have an iPhone or iTouch you might want to try out the modified version of the Ordinary Heroes BookOnBrowser that will run on either device.

It's surprisingly readable for such a small screen and includes links to the video clips and Web resources.

To try it, visit the BookOnBrowser page at

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

New reviews of Ordinary Heroes

Tyler Tichlaar, author of several outstanding historical novels about Marquette, recently agreed to review Ordinary Heroes, including the printed book, digital book, and the documentary video.

Like many readers, Tyler was initially a bit skeptical about the digital book as he really enjoys the look and feel of traditional books. But once he get started, he really go into the digital version of Ordinary Heroes.

You can read his reviews at the links below:

Review of the book:

Review of the documentary video:

Author/book site

If you're looking for some good books, or if you're an author with a book that needs exposure, be sure to check out It's a good site with informative reviews on books you might not otherwise discover.

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Sunday, February 15, 2009

February 18, 1945: Riva Ridge

On the night of February 18th, 1945, the 10th Mountain Infantry Division started its first significant engagement of World War II when several companies of the 86th Regiment scaled Riva Ridge at night, with unloaded rifles. They took the Germans by surprise and were able to hold Riva Ridge against determined counter-attacks.

In the following days, the 85th and 87th Regiments advanced on Mount Belvedere and the adjacent peaks Mounts Gorgolesco and della Torraccia. It was a brief, but bitter battle, with the 10th suffering 900 casualties in just a few days.

John Koski had not yet joined the 10th and did not participate in the actions on Riva Ridge, Mount Belvedere, and della Torraccia. He was still in the 8th Replacement Depot waiting to be assigned to a unit. But many of the men that he later served with did participate in the assault on della Torraccia, including his future platoon sergeant, James Orwig, and his future squad sergeant, James Winterbottom.

When John was assigned to the 1st mortar squad of F-85 on Feburary 28th, it was as a replacement for one of the men killed or wounded on della Torraccia the previous week.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Ordinary Heroes featured at Atlas Books

Atlas Books is featuring Ordinary Heroes: Six Stars in the Window on their Web site.

I think they did a good job with the write-up, part of which I'll post below.

"That detailed information and first-person interviews made it possible to for Dan to reconstruct their experience in a very detailed and compelling manner. "It's difficult for us as civilians to fully appreciate what soldiers have to do," he explains, "but I believe that those who read this book will get a glimpse into the heart of the WWII generation, they'll get a glimpse of what it means to be a soldier."

To read the full review, go to:

While you're there, browse through the other books available from Atlas Books. They feature some very good books, many of which you may not find at your local bookstore.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

BookOn Digital Publishing Technology

Those of you who've tried the BookOnCD that's included with each printed copy of the book already know how compelling it can be to read a digital book where photos turn into videos of actual WWII events or interviews with family members and veterans.

If you haven't yet tried, it pop that BookOnCD into your Mac or Windows computer and give a try. I think you'll be pleasantly surprised.

It doesn't need any installation--just insert the disk to start.

If you don't have the printed book with BookOnCD, you can download essentially the same product from the Ordinary Heroes Web site. Just click the BookOnDownload icon on the right side of the screen and use the appropriate link to download the Mac or Windows version.

That digital publishing system can used for many product types, including textbooks (like our college computer textbooks), historical books (like Ordinary Heroes), or any type of book that could benefit from the use of video, animations, Web links, and learner feedback or assessment.

We're always on the lookout for publishing partners, authors, and content, so if you have a product that might benefit from use of this technology, please contact