Electronic Books


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This presentation was given March 23, 2010, as part of the LSU Libraries Tech Talk Series, facilitated by Digital Technologies Librarian Rebecca Miller.

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Electronic Books

  1. 1. Electronic Books<br />March Tech Talk<br />March 23, 2010<br />
  2. 2. Definition & History<br />eBooks:<br />First produced by Project Gutenberg in the 1970s<br />Had to be read using a computer until late 1990s<br />Started out for small and very targeted markets: technical manuals, etc.<br />Most books that were digitized were already in the public domain<br />
  3. 3. eReaders (standalone)<br />eReaders:<br />Came on the market in the late 1990s<br />Dedicated hardware devices for accessing e-books<br />Specifically designed for the reading experience<br />Are available for the general consumer to use<br />Market is dominated by only a few eReaders:<br />Amazon Kindle ($259)<br />B&N Nook ($259)<br />Sony Reader ($169-$399)<br />
  4. 4. Other “readers”<br />eBooks are also available via other devices:<br />“Regular” computers<br />Laptops, netbooks<br />Smartphones<br />May need special <br />software applications<br />
  5. 5. Possible document formats<br />Not all documents can be read on all devices.<br />Some possible formats include:<br />PDF<br />Broadband eBooks (BBeB): proprietary (Sony)<br />RTF<br />Amazon Whispernet (AZW): proprietary (Amazon)<br />HTML<br />
  6. 6. For Amazon Kindle, from wikipedia<br />
  7. 7. Conversion<br />There are many proprietary and free ebook converters that can convert documents to the formats appropriate for the device you’re using:<br />http://wiki.mobileread.com/wiki/E-book_conversion<br />
  8. 8. Digital Rights Management<br />DRM=limitations for the user<br />Prevents transferring, copying, printing, too many downloads, etc.<br />Always check to see what limitations may come with the document you’re purchasing/downloading<br />Consumer comments re: DRM:<br />“I call it a Swindle, not a Kindle”<br />DRM-free?<br />Project Gutenberg<br />Manybooks (link at end of presentation)<br />Quite a few others<br />
  9. 9. Other (evolution of?) eReaders<br />ALA Midwinter TechSource webinar:<br />Blio (http://blioreader.com) <br />Free eReader software<br />Copia (http://www.thecopia.com) <br />Social eReading experience<br />Sophie (http://www.sophiecommons.org)<br />“Redefines the notion of a book” <br />
  10. 10. Advantages<br />Books are cheaper (around $10)<br />Instantaneous access<br />Space saver<br />Environmentally friendly<br />Access to many out of copyright texts<br />Visual advantages for those with weak eyesight or for reading in direct sunlight<br />Annotating/hyperlinking/etc.<br />Many have read-aloud features<br />Many have language <br />translation features<br />
  11. 11. Drawbacks<br />Devices themselves are expensive<br />Obsolescence (betamax metaphor)<br />Susceptibility to damage<br />All your “eggs” in one device<br />Content compatibility<br />Navigating tricky legal situations (from a library’s point of view)<br />
  12. 12. Considerations<br />How are advantages/disadvantages resolved?<br />Consider:<br />Use<br />Lifestyle<br />Preference<br />Budget<br />Savviness<br />
  13. 13. University examples<br />UT-Austin<br />http://www.laits.utexas.edu/fi<br />UVA<br />http://www.virginia.edu/uvatoday/newsRelease.php?id=9509<br />Penn State University Libraries’ 7 Things You Need to Know About Sony Readers in a Higher Ed Enviroment:<br />http://www.libraries.psu.edu/etc/medialib/psulpublicmedialibrary/lls/documents.Par.53256.File.dat/7things_SonyReader.pdf<br />
  14. 14. eReaders in libraries…<br />From Farleigh Dickinson University Library<br />
  15. 15. eReaders in libraries…<br />And, from the ARL Mobile Technologies Report (January Tech Talk):<br />University of Nebraska-Omaha’s (Criss Library) use of Kindles (Library Journal 6/17/2009)<br />UNO's Kindle plan:<br />“We do not see a violation of the terms of service agreement,” Joyce Neujahr, director of patron services, told LJ, after discussing the issue with library dean Stephen Shorb, who initially proposed that the library lend the device. “We have purchased the content on the Kindle, and loan the Kindle just like we loan a hardcover, print book. The difference is where that purchased book resides. Whether it is on a shelf, or on a Kindle, we have still purchased the title.”<br />Neujahrnoted that, unlike BYU, UNO is using its nine Kindles to circulate requested best-sellers, not for ILL, and to the UNO community at large. Moreover, UNO is taking a conservative approach and not adding each title to several devices, though Amazon allows a book to be placed on multiple devices. She said UNO had not sought approval from Amazon but had consulted law professors, who agreed that the terms of use seem to bar only profit-seeking efforts to distribute the digital content to a third party.<br />
  16. 16. More resources<br />Horizon Report Resources:<br />http://delicious.com/tag/hz10+ebooks<br />Project Gutenberg: http://www.gutenberg.org/wiki/Main_Page<br />Scribd:<br />http://www.scribd.com<br />DailyLit:<br />http://dailylit.com<br />ManyBooks.Net<br />http://manybooks.net<br />