Just saw an article about Kno, a new company launching a digital textbook platform and reader. The device offers a two panel tablet for viewing textbook material in true form by maintaining page structure, charts, graphs, and other non-text elements. The device allows note taking and highlighting and offers Wi-Fi and 3-G access. Kno has already contracted with 4 academic textbook publishers including Wiley, McGraw Hill, Pearson, and Cengage Learning. For more info, see this article from gigaom or the press release on business wire. Twitter @GoodtoKNO
This summer, Wiley will launch it’s online library, a congregation of journals, books, reference works, lab protocols, and databases. The Online Library will replace the current Wiley InterScience website. Imprints include Wiley-Blackwell, Wiley- VCH, and Jossey-Bass. More information, including a description of interface options, use data standards, and alert services is available on the Wiley site.
Baker & Taylor recently announced a partnership with Information Age Publishing and Wiley (announcement) for print on demand services. Using B & T’s Textstream Digital Print Service, over 1,000 backfiles from Information Age Publishing and a wide variety of backfile titles from Wiley will now be available POD for B & T customers.
B & T launched it’s Textstream Digital Print Service in the fall of 2009. Textstream offers digital print and bind options with a variety of options including: hardcover, spiral bindings, dust-jackets, and 4-color inside pages.
Glad to see (press release below) that the patron driven model is going well for another e-book aggregator. Librarians – please take a look at the PDA survey from ebrary. It’s extensive, detailed, and asks very specific questions about workflow. The results should be really interesting. Continue reading ebrary PDA pilot extended, PDA survey announced
I recently posted about the ebrary 50% off ebook title sale, which included a few publishers. We’ll it’s grown now to include many more publishers. See the press release below and use the real-time link of publishers for the most accurate list. Continue reading 50% off ebook titles – more publishers added
I’ve resisted posting information about sales and specials from various publishers and aggregators for fear of favoritism, but this eBook deal is pretty good, crosses many publishers, and could save libraries lots of money (which is the main reason I’ll post it). If other aggregators have similar announcements, I’ll be glad to post those in order to be fair. Here are the details: Continue reading Attention Libraries – Discounted eBooks – backlist titles 50% off
An abledbody news article last week discusses the new Kindle DX and it’s text-to-speech program that will read a book aloud. According to the abledbody article, the Kindle does not go far enough to provide an accessible player to persons with disabilities. The eBook menus and controls are not audio accessible, limiting access to those with visual disabilities. I’m not certain Kindle had persons with disabilities in mind when they created this new text-to-speech feature since it is not limited to those with disabilities. Kindle will work with Pearson, Cengage Learning, Wiley and 75 other University Presses to provide textbooks on the Kindle this year. Additionally, 3 newspapers have given Amazon the rights to text-to-speech content, NYT, Washington Post, and the Boston Globe. Sounds to me like the much broader market, with a potential to listen to books in the car, while walking, doing housework, or any other multitude of activities is what got Amazon tickled pink about text-to-speech. Just in case you didn’t hear, Kindle will begin a text book pilot program with 6 Universities this fall.
Gale Virtual Reference Library
Review. First published November 1, 2006 (Booklist).
Gale Virtual Reference Library (GVRL) contains more than 700 reference titles from more than 25 publishers, including Gale, Wiley, Sage, and Cambridge, and focuses on multivolume encyclopedias from a variety of fields. Purchased title by title, GVRL can be customized to fit any library. GVRL runs on the PowerSearch interface, which is clean and structured with many special features. Content is easy to navigate with browse, basic, and advanced searches. Users may select from three basic search options—keyword (default), document title, or full text. Keyword searches the title, introductory text, authors, and first 50 words of an article. GVRL’s advanced search offers several field-search types (document title, image caption, publication title, ISBN, author, start page, document number); limits by date, publication title, subject area, audience type, and documents with images; and search-history access—a feature unique to GVRL. Limits are only available on the advanced search screen. Results are ranked by relevance and may be sorted by document or publication title.
Several features stand out in GVRL. Articles are delivered in html (showing actual page breaks) with links to pdf versions. Users may mark, store, and export items for print, e-mail, or download. Multiple citation formats are included—APA, MLA, and plain text with direct exports to EndNote, Procite, RefWorks, and Reference Manager. Articles can be translated into eight languages (but be careful: translation is not exact but rather employs a gisting software). The InfoMark tool allows the user to obtain persistent links to books or articles with options to bookmark or e-mail. E-books include all front and back matter with hyperlinked tables of content and indexes. The Subcollection Manager Tool allows libraries to create small subject collections within GVRL that can be linked to courses or subjects on the library Web site and searched separately from other GVRL content. Many articles include a find-similar-articles option, which utilizes e-book indexes. Libraries may use the customization options to include messages, logos, and links to library services and to track usage. Users may set preferences of font, colors, language, and number of results per page during their sessions. The cost of individual titles is 10 percent above the print cost. Annual hosting fees range from $50 to $300 depending on the number of titles owned. – Sue Polanka