5 thoughts on “What is an eBook?”

  1. I work in a medical library. One of our textbooks is available electronically through PubMed. Moving around in the text is unbelievable complicated–you can’t click from one section to the next, you must perform a search. After showing a group of students how to access their required reading, many of them decided to buy the print book. The time it took to navigate the text online was not worth the free access.
    As a distance librarian I love having materials available online. In this case it pushed students toward the print book. I wonder how their experience will affect their shopping choices in the future?

    Cynthia Porter
    Distance Support Librarian, A.T. Still University

  2. What is the “bookness” of an e-book? What makes it a book? Is it because there is a printed equlivalent? Or does the clunky interface define the e-book?

  3. I have a hard time knowing what to purchase in e-book form, as just about every reference book is coming this way now, or many. Working in a public library with limited funds, and often limited number of computers available for the folks that need them most, it becomes a tough choice. I wonder if many states with digital resources available to all include ebooks in their collections. CT is just starting to do this.

  4. Reference books have traditionally offered information in chunks, and this is why they were among the first books on the library shelves to be digitized. Online, all content is available in chunks, so there’s really no difference between reference books, monographs, and textbooks in an e-format.

  5. An e-book is what the publisher makes it. A good publisher who is comfortable with creating an e-book can make it a great experience.

    An e-book should have searchable text, hyper-links that take you to various places (whether off the body of work to the internet or not).

    A good e-book can enhance the reading experience by offering illustrations if the user asks for them. It can be interactive by offering a variety of questions that the user can choose from.

    It should be intuitive – anticipating various senarios required by the reader.

    If strictly for entertainment it can offer animation.

    It should include a dictionary so it can become a teaching tool.

    A book e-book is a book – but an enhanced book that makes the read an experience.

Comments are closed.