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What Role Does a Library Have in the Ebook World?
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What Role Does a Library Have in the Ebook World?


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  • 1. eBook Applications in Libraries: Challenges & Opportunities Susan Gibbons Digital Initiatives Librarian University of Rochester November 2, 2001
  • 2. eBook Devices
    • RCA REB1100- $299
    • RCA REB1200- $699
  • 3. Features
    • 10-12 titles loaded simultaneously
    • Adjustable backlighting
    • Choice of 2 font sizes
    • Stylus for margin notes & highlighting
    • Hyperlinked dictionary (REB1100 only)
    • Hypertext touch screen
    • Bookmarking
    • Easy to erase markings
    • NO printing capability
  • 4. Downloading eBooks Gemstar Server ANALOG! Ethernet Port Gemstar Server
  • 5. Encryption Problem
    • Title is encrypted so that it can be read only on a single, unique reader
    • In other words, cannot transfer a purchased title onto any other reader, even of the same model
    • Cataloging implications
  • 6. Content
    • Barnes and Noble; Amazon; Powells; Gemstar Server
    • Predominately popular, adult fiction and non-fiction
    • Periodicals and newspaper subscriptions
    • What’s Missing?
      • Children
      • Young Adult
      • Academic & Scholarly
      • Foreign Language
  • 7. eBook-only titles The Veteran By Frederick Forsyth First of a quintet of short stories Fire in the Hole By Elmore Leonard
  • 8. eBook-Enhanced Titles Soul Mountain by Gao Xingjian E-Book edition includes author’s Nobel Prize acceptance speech “A Case for Literature” Pride Before the Fall: The Trials of Bill Gates and the End of the Microsoft Era  by John Heilemann E-Book edition includes US v. Microsoft legal documents, including Gates’ deposition
  • 9. Patron Responses
    • No complaints of eye strain
      • 67% read 1 or more complete titles
      • Combo backlighting & large font
    • Want devices to be lighter
    • Patrons really liked
      • backlighting
      • several titles in one package
      • larger fonts
  • 10. Patron Responses
    • Not just curiosity
      • 35% prefer ebook; 23% no preference
    • Reasons for ebook preference
      • Large fonts, backlighting, easier to read & fun
    • Reasons for paper book preference
      • Tradition, more durable, better selection, no battery, less expensive
  • 11. Librarian Responses
    • Encryption Challenges
      • Cataloging
      • Patrons can’t request specific titles
    • Circulation
      • Lots of stuff
      • Clean up ebooks
      • Recharge battery
  • 12.
    • Digital vs analog phone lines
    • Appropriate titles
    • How does one browse an ebook?
    • What if it breaks?
    • Preservation
    Librarian Responses
  • 13. Audio eBooks
    • Digital equivalent of books on tape, but in MP3 files
    • Content is never lost of damaged
    • has largest collection of audio ebooks
      • Permits library lending
      • Encryption protection is relaxed
    • Abridged, unabridged, subscriptions & non-traditional content
  • 14. Patron Responses
    • Enjoy not having to carry around boxes of cassettes and CDs
    • Want cassette adapters for in-car listening
    • Ensure buttons and display screen are large enough
    • Ideally, patrons want to use their own MP3 players
  • 15. Contact Information
    • Susan Gibbons
      • Digital Initiatives Librarian
      • University of Rochester
      • [email_address]
    This production was supported by Federal Library Services and Technology Act funds, awarded to The New York State Library by the Federal Institute of Museum and Library Services.