Tons of good reads these last few days. Have a look:
Wow, ton of good things to read over the last 4 days, here’s a sampling of what I’ve been reading:
Cataloging and ILS: SkyRiver Files Antitrust Suit Against OCLC; Innovative Interfaces is Also Part of Suit « ResourceShelf
Final Report on E-Books & Public Libraries from Chief Officers of State Library Agencies (COSLA) « ResourceShelf
New Research (Full Text): Not as Web Savvy as You May Think; Young People, Web Search, and Credibility « ResourceShelf
Listened in on a Kindle Loan program at the Handheld Librarian conference today. Panelists from university and public libraries discussed their current Kindle loan programs. Some highlights included:
- Each school had between 4 and 8 Kindles for loan, mostly Kindle 1 and 2
- Circulation staff handled the loan/fines and the downloading of titles
- Program started as an ILL service, asking patrons with ILL requests if they were open to using the Kindle/ebook (about 1/2 were willing to during the pilot) Continue reading
I just got my hands on the April 2009 issue of Against the Grain, and lo and behold an interview with NSR’s Sue Polanka. The interview was done by Dennis Brunning from Arizona State University in his cheeky style and is followed by his humorous interview with Kindles 1 and 2. The article is not available online, so here are some highlights. Continue reading
One thing librarians are always ranting about is the cost of eBooks. In some instances, the eBook can cost 150-200% of the list price. The Kindle 2 blog just posted an interesting break down on the cost of print books. When it comes down to it, printing costs are only about 10% of the total book cost. Author royalties, marketing, proof reading/editing, cover design and the like all take a piece of the pie as well. These expenses don’t magically go away on the eBook. The 10% printing cost is used to manage interfaces, buy servers, and to pay programmers, which probably costs more than 10% of the book I would think. Ron Boehm, from ABC-CLIO, wrote a nice article about the economics of publishing and ebooks for NSR, it contains more information on the pricing of p vs. e. The question still remains, why are some eBooks priced at list and others at 150 – 200% over list? I think some of this has to do with the number of simultaneous users, 24/7 access, and other value added features that a publisher or aggregator may offer. Recouping costs of development and storage are probably factored in their too. None of this makes it any easier to swallow for those of us paying the higher costs, but one can only hope that over time, as the eBook matures and interfaces are perfected, that the costs will stabilize.
Michael Pelikan has written an interesting article in Against the Grain about the Kindle Sony ebook reader showdown (Feb 2009 issue, article not available online.) Michael focuses this first article on the personal use market, but I’m (impatiently) awaiting the next installment when he will look at library support for reading devices. Michael is from Penn State where they’ve partnered with Sony to distribute Sony Readers through the library and within selected courses. The article includes interesting comments from faculty about the experience. He also gives a shout-out to calibre, open source ebook management software.