iBooks is a free app that was created by Apple for it’s iDevices. It displays your books in a nice visual bookshelf and can also be used to view PDF documents. Basic customizations as far as font size and style are also options. Books can be purchased from the iTunes Store, accessed on the back side of the bookshelf (it actually rotates) with samples of the book available for free before purchasing it.
A posting at The Chronicle of Higher Ed website back in February discussed the issues involved with making the backpack obsolete.The argument was that Apple could in fact do for the textbook what it did for music. The real revolutionary concept was the iTunes Store and the ability to quickly download inexpensive songs, easily accessible on the iDevices. However, changes to the system of copyright, licensing, and even the idea that the textbook is central to educational experience need to come. Alas, the writer laments seeing those changes anytime in the near future Furthermore without a camera, the current iPad is really challenged in the way of content creation, a citical skill that students need to engage if they are to be successful citizens with control over their lives.Follow the link to read the whole article.
In many ways the interfaces, formats and even how they function can differ from publisher, book or aggregator. This free app, Inkling, is interesting as I think it begins to show what interactive textbooks will become. It is barely in its infancy as far as available content, but it allows you to download a sample chapter, which then allows you to see that it has gotten away from the traditional ‘page’ view and is instead sections that you can scroll through. Images can be tapped to expand and bring up additional information and there is some basic highlighting functionality. It’s interesting that actual page number are found in the margins to give some sense of location for referencing later.
eBooks in Higher Education What’s On The Horizon<br />New Media Consortium <br />Summer Conference June 2011<br />Bill Zobrist<br />Emerging & Online Product Strategy<br />
eBooks! Shapes and sizes!<br />VitalSource<br />
Few textbooks</li></li></ul><li>Making the backpack obsolete?<br />Is Apple doing to the textbook what it did to music? Or was it iTunes?<br />It’s not the device, it’s the person holding it that’s changed!<br />We simply don’t use books like we used to<br />
The ebook is dead<br />What was the ebook? PDF?<br />
CourseSmart<br />More devices…the ability to run CourseSmart on a wide variety of devices and via the cloud <br />More integration…partnerships with more platforms that enable contextual integration of CourseSmart eTextbooks on major LMS platforms. <br />Better and more interactive reading experience…more interactivity in the eReader to bring out the fullness of pedagogy allowed by different types of media experiences.<br />More products available on CourseSmart for student purchase…MyLabs, etc.<br />
CafeScribe<br />rebuilt reader with a flexible, scalable architecture<br />personalized learning tools<br />extending the LMS through access to digital content<br />adding data on learning analytics through roles and permissions in the reader<br />use emerging technologies to fast forward mobile options<br />respect the different uses smartphones and tablets can play in learning<br />
What I’m hearing<br />Rich interactions<br />Tools for personalization<br />Social<br />Device independence<br />Connected to other educational tech<br />