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  • Jo’s manual Questionnaire Request for volunteers
  • Availability of content still an issue, although we have found that Overdrive’s switching to MobiPocket improves range of content; PC-based services like e-brary tend to be rather esoteric for public library users; very interested in specialist collections like Safari We went into the project pretty much believing the research insofar as the technology/collections not being suitable to leisure reading; responses from users, especially mobile, housebound, visually-impaired have proved us wrong. The major drawback not necessarily the technology, although something bigger than a PDA might be preferred, but lack of suitable content Our users offered us many reasons why the collections might be suitable for various people
  • Major concern over the ability/priority applied by Corporate IT partners in implementing services requiring complex functionality software (e-books, chat reference). Process of procurement, purchasing, and implementation at the very least bureaucratic, adding quite a bit of time on to the whole process; at the most obstructive Size of PDA a problem, especially the screen (why we would like to experiment with Notepads etc at risk of cutting down on portability); stylus and buttons too small; battery life a big drawback. Still, there are workarounds for the stylus (American Arthritic Foundation), the battery life; and the lightweight and portability of the PDA was considered a plus, especially if reading a long/big book This arose with the day care centre people: because there would be a tendency to borrow self-help type books, the PDAs ensured privacy of reader, especially in a public environment
  • Transcript

    • 1. If Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, Do Public Librarians Dream of Electronic Books: E-books in Essex Martin Palmer, Strategic Manager: Transformation & Resources, Essex County Council Linda Berube Co-East, Regional Manager
    • 2. E-Books and Essex: presentation overview
      • Regional context
      • Project summary
      • Procurement and implementation
      • Sample searches
      • Preliminary findings and recommendations
      • Inspiration for the future…
    • 3. The East of England Context: The Co-east Partnership
      • Consortium including all library authorities in the East of England: Norfolk, Suffolk, Essex, Cambridgeshire, Peterborough; Hertfordshire, Thurrock, Bedfordshire, Luton, Southend-on-Sea
      • Resource discovery and sharing using Z39.50 and ISO/ILL protocols
      • Joint e-procurement
      • New partners, from other library sectors, through Co-East Plus
      • Managing of national and regional services - Ask A Librarian, Familia, transport
      • Fostering partnerships through regional and national working groups: MLAC; EEMLAC; JISC; CONARLS; Combined Regions; CILIP etc
      • Supplier partnerships: FDI; Dynix; DS/CrossNet; BiblioMondo; GEAC; ebrary; Overdrive
      • Projects: Co-East Plus (completed); Learn East (an EQUAL project); Essex e-books; EEMLAC’s Source-East; Ask Cymru; Virtual Reference Toolkit trial
    • 4. E-books in Essex: who and how…
      • Recipient of first round of LASER grants April 2003
      • Project partners: Essex Libraries (Martin Palmer); Loughborough University (James Dearnley); Co-East (Linda Berube)
      • Essex Project team: Saffron Walden; Loughton
      • Supplier partners: Overdrive; ebrary; HP
      • User Advisory Group: PLR; JISC; CBC; UKOLN; Richmond; Blackburn
      • Project website:
      • Progress reports:
    • 5. E-books in Essex
      • Feasibility/proof-of-concept/live service delivery
      • E-books accessible via PC or mobile technology…
      • E-book formats: Palm, Adobe 6, MobiPocket…
      • Distributed to special user groups: mobile library users; housebound; day care centres; etc
    • 6. E-valuation…
      • Evaluation Methodology:
      • Evaluating collection usage during the nine month period
      • Evaluating user perceptions of the ebook collections(PC-based) and mobile technology
      • Evaluating professional perceptions of the e-book collections.
    • 7. Some tasks we set ourselves
      • Orientation for staff
      • Regular meetings with library staff
      • Recruiting volunteers
      • Training guides
      • Paper and online questionnaires
      • User and staff evaluation
      • Publicity programme
      • Progress reports
    • 8. Some questions we had at the start of the project…
      • What demand was there?
        • None that we were aware of…
      • What content was there?
        • Fiction? Non-fiction?
        • Anything for the general reader?
        • Anything for children?
    • 9. Some more questions…
      • What was the best format?
        • Don’t know, but there were lots to choose from…
      • What kind of hardware?
        • Dedicated e-book readers…
        • PCs
        • PDAs
    • 10. And even more questions…
      • What kind of supply model?
        • Traditional –
          • Select individual titles?
            • One copy lent to one person at a time
        • Newer -
          • Buy collection(s)?
            • Simultaneous multiple access: entire collection always available
    • 11. And…
      • Who were the suppliers?
        • Net Library
        • Ebrary
        • Safari
        • Gale
        • Overdrive…..
    • 12. Some answers…
      • Were provided by the project itself
        • Target audiences to include
          • Housebound people
          • Mobile library users
          • Visually impaired people
        • So:
        • Hardware had to include
          • Handheld device
    • 13. Handheld device…
      • Dedicated ebook reader?
        • No longer available…
        • No longer desirable!
      • So - PDAs – but what type?
          • Palm
          • Pocket PC/Compaq Ipaq
          • Sony Zire
              • etc etc
        • Chose Ipaq 1910 –
            • Screen size/price…
    • 14. Content for PDAs
      • Formats – Palm Reader, Adobe Acrobat, Microsoft Reader… etc
      • Supplier –
        • Overdrive, in Cleveland Ohio
        • Wide range of titles in Palm and Adobe
    • 15. Ebooks and PDAs
      • Bought 250 titles, accessible via website
      • Also accessible via library catalogue record…
      • Mainly Fiction in Palm, Non-fiction in Adobe- initially…
      • Traditional model – 21day loan
        • (but no fines…)
    • 16. E-Books and PCs
      • Ebrary –
        • Accessible via People’s Network PCs, and remotely from home…
    • 17. E-books and PCs
      • Buy whole collection(s)
          • Public Library “General Interest”
          • 2500 + titles – mainly nonfictio
    • 18.  
    • 19.  
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    • 26. There have been 52 separate book titles downloaded in the period 010104 – 210404. The desriptor above of 4 titles represents the ‘titles’ of the categories above I.e the month headings.
    • 27.  
    • 28.  
    • 29. The users speak (the good)
      • " The ebook site is wonderful: It's what the Internet was invented for..."   recommending it to all my friends, and a neighbour -  who is blind - has just started to use ebooks as a result
      • I enjoyed the experience, and I feel with time I could get more used to the experience
      • Useful to take on holiday or even private study when a paper book is less easy to cope with.
      • I think they might be useful for people who travel a lot or have problems holding a book
      • Ease of transport. I seem to spend a lot of time waiting in hospitals or travelling
      • Can be used anywhere; takes up a small space in bags etc if travelling
    • 30. The users speak (the bad)
      • A fairly long learning curve to concentrate on small page size. However, after this period I found it easy
      • Printed paper books are visually better (palm being closest software to book), but iPAQ is good enough in the light of added portability
      • It seems to be for quick, casual reading only. It is difficult to "lose yourself in a book" I was very aware of my surroundings, and the people near me.
      • It is a completely difference concept. Would appeal more to young people, though might help elderly who cannot hold a large book (probably too small though).
    • 31. The users speak (the ugly)
      • I read quickly and was irritated by the flicker of moving the small pages on. Not easy to check back when I want to. I found it very irritating
      • The iPAQ is a much less enjoyable reading experience. The 'page-size' is too small. The iPAQ imposes it's pressure on the experience in a way that the paper book does not
      • Feel-look-texture-look of a library. Books more personal - just more technology, not as interesting as a book can be - older appreciate a book. Think it puts you off reading. Long term eyesight effects? Would turn us off reading. Not clear how we buy. How we get books - costs?
      • Cost and browser use. End of libraries such as Loughton and Debden
    • 32. And the very polite…
      • It was very good to try it out but I feel it is just not for me. I lost the story and could not get it back, and it needed charging halfway through. But thank you I will stick to paperbacks
    • 33. What we now know
      • Demand clearly exists
      • Content increasing daily – now over 1 million copyrighted e-books
      • Technology growing and improving
    • 34. What we liked
      • Portability, via PDAs (or tablets…)
      • Change font size, so every title can be large print
      • Access, 24/7 remotely
      • “ Read Aloud” in some formats
      • Search whole text
      • “ Added extras”, like DVDs…
    • 35. Our concerns
      • Collections:
      • Availability of Content
      • Fiction vs Non-fiction
      • Fewer (one?) formats
      • “ Not every print book makes a good e-book…eg cookery…”
      • Wider range of pricing/supply models?
    • 36. More concerns…
      • Technology (implementation and use of mobile technology):
      • Corporate/Local authority IT partners
      • Collections software functionality
      • PDA functionality
      • Privacy
      • Managing users fears/expectations
    • 37. If you want to try this at home…
      • Guidelines from Final Report:
      • Product Selection
      • Product Negotiation
      • Technical Implementation
      • Collection Development
      • Staff Training/Champions
      • Promotion
      • Evaluation
    • 38. And still we rise: Co-East Information Commons
      • Equity of Access
      • Region-wide, potential for cross-regional collaboration
      • Virtual e-procurement
      • E-interlending
      • Adding suppliers : Safari, netLibrary etc
      • Selection of mobile technology: PDAs, notebooks, laptops, smart phones
    • 39. E-books in Essex
      • Service now being offered countywide
      • New titles being added regularly
      • Being integrated into new LMS as part of standard service
    • 40.  
    • 41.  
    • 42.  
    • 43. Assumptions challenged…
      • “Everything we thought we knew about who’d use e-books was wrong…”
      • Patricia Lowry, Cleveland (Ohio) Public Library
    • 44. The future…
      • “ The e-book market is set to explode…
      • … What better institutions to evangelize new reading than libraries…”
      • Steve Potash (President of the Open Ebook Forum– and CEO of Overdrive…)
    • 45. Questions and Information contacts
      • Martin Palmer [email_address]
      • The Essex Team: Elaine Adams, Janice Waugh, Jill Palmer, Lee Shelsher
      • Linda Berube linda . berube
      • Joanne John [email_address]
      • James Dearnley [email_address]
      • Anne Morris [email_address]
      • Cliff McNight [email_address]
      • Suppliers:
      • Overdrive
      • Ebrary (UK representative: Coutts)
      • Hewlett Packard: