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E-Books

Douglas County Libraries' DIY E-Book Hosting

A few miles from the Front Range of the Rockies in Colorado, Douglas County Libraries is blazing trails in e-books in libraries. As Director James LaRue described in a Public Libraries article, the library staff, while happy with OverDrive’s solution at the in the early days of e-books, now...

Apple's Textbook Strategy

Apple has decided to attempt yet another media disruption, this time focusing on reinventing the textbook market. This move was foretold in the biography of Steve Jobs, where Walter Isaacson wrote about Jobs: “He wanted to disrupt the textbook industry, and save the spines of spavined students bearing backpacks by creating electronic texts and curriculum material for the iPad." The details of the...

Product News: OverDrive 3rd Quarter Results Show Spike in Ebook Use

OverDrive released 3rd quarter 2011  traffic and ciruclation statisics a few days ago. Through September 30, the 15,000 libraries in the OverDrive network showed nearly triple the number of eBook checkouts versus all of 2010, as well as more than 2 million new users. Below are details.   eBook checkouts already up 200% versus all of 2010 to more than 12 million and on pace to exceed 16 million...

Ready, Aim....Fire!

That explosion you heard today? That was the sound of a thousand heads hitting a thousand desks over at Barnes & Noble HQ today as Amazon pulled the rug out of B&N’s temporary lead in eBook technology. For the last year Barnes & Noble’s Nook Color has stood alone on the tablet eReader front, and their more-recently announced Nook Touch was at the top of the technological heap of eInk...

Predictions for 2011

Since my November post was all about what was going to be hot for the holiday season, I thought it only fitting that the last post of 2010 for me would be looking forward to 2011. Here’s a short list of my guesses for the technology world in 2011, particularly the eBook and eReader realm. In no particular order: 1. 2011 is the year that eReaders enter the realm of commodity. I’ve been saying for...

Holiday Gadgets 2010

With the Holiday season quickly approaching, I decided that I should try and condense the last few months of gadget craziness into something like a recommended list for that special someone in your life. Or just for you...eReaderThis particular space is getting really crowded, but there are still a couple of clear standouts. If you want to buy an eInk based eReader, I still like the Amazon...

How Amazon is Winning the eBook Wars

Amazon announced a new piece of their eBook strategy this past week, with the launch of Kindle for the Web. This allows you to: Read a book sample from Amazon.com without leaving your browser. No download or installation required. Share book samples with your friends via email or social networks. Embed a book sample in your personal blog or website and earn referral fees on sales. This...

Change how you read online

I decided that this month I wanted to share a couple of very specific tools that I find invaluable for dealing with information online. These two tools make reading long form text online so much easier and more convenient that I can't recommend them enough. The two tools are the Readability bookmark from Acr90 Labs, and the Instapaper service. Readability is a bookmarklet, a little piece of...

The Apple iPad

On Wednesday, the most anticipated technology product announcement of the last few years took place (video of the event here), and Apple finally showed off their tablet computer, the iPad. The iPad is going to dominate the technology discussion for the next several months, but here's a first-blush look at the tech specs and features that are going to be important for libraries and education...

Opening the Secret Garden: Kindle to Become More Accessible

When it comes to blind and low-vision members of our society, the stakes of the digital information revolution may be higher for than for the sighted population.  Once a text has been created in or converted to a digital format, the accessibility options blossom and bloom, at least in theory.   The Kindle has been a particularly nettlesome, tantalizing thorn in this garden of digital delights...

Barnes and Noble's Nook Steps into the Ring with Kindle

The Amazon Kindle's first real competitor saw the light of day for the first time this week, and it looks very, very impressive. The Barnes & Noble Nook launched Oct 20th, and it stands toe-to-toe with the standard that has been set by the Kindle, even exceeding it in many ways. The important bits: The Nook has the same 6-inch eInk screen as the Kindle, and is $20 cheaper (the Nook preorders...