Tag Archives: ebooks

E-Books Get a Makeover

“For typography fans, electronic books have long been the visual equivalent of fingernails on a chalkboard. The fonts are uninviting. Jarring swaths of white space stretch between words. Absent are all the typesetting nuances of a fine print book. Now Amazon and Google are doing something about it.” (via WSJ)

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High ebook prices ‘unsustainable,’ says city’s top librarian

“Toronto Public Library is crying foul over “unreasonably high” ebook prices that it says limit its titles as demand soars for virtual reading. The organization’s top executive, Vickery Bowles, said publishers charge vastly different prices to libraries than average consumers, and the ebooks come also with many usage restrictions. In an interview with the Star on Tuesday, the city librarian called the prices and conditions “unsustainable,” saying some publishers charge libraries $85 for an ebook while the average consumer gets the same title for only $15.99. “That puts a lot of pressure on our budget,” she said. “We need something that is more reasonable.” (via Toronto Star)

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The Plan To Give E-Books To Poor Kids

“Brown Bear, Brown Bear what do you see? I see a blue horse, a purple cat, and a new program — unveiled today by President Obama — with one goal in mind: To put good books in the hands of low-income kids. More specifically, $250 million worth of e-books available to young, low-income readers — free. The effort will work through a new app, being developed by the New York Public Library, that has the buy-in of all the major publishers.” (via NPR)

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OBAMA PUSHES READING THROUGH EBOOK, LIBRARY INITIATIVES

“Linking reading to technology, the White House marshaled major book publishers to provide more than $250 million in free e-books to low-income students and is seeking commitments from local governments and schools across the country to ensure that every student has a library card. President Barack Obama was to announce the two initiatives Thursday at a Washington library as part of his two-year-old ConnectED program that aims to improve education through digital connectivity.” (via The Associated Press)

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The Fictionary Adds Book-Specific Dictionaries to Ebooks

“A lot of books have their own very specific type of word usage. Whether it’s the Song of Ice and Fire series or Catcher in the Rye, a standard dictionary isn’t always enough. The Fictionary fills in those gaps. A Fictionary is essentially a book-specific dictionary that integrates into your ereader. So, when you select a word to look up a definition, it brings up a definition based on the book as opposed to a classic dictionary definition.” ( via Lifehacker)

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Clean Reader app removes profanity from e-books

“An app that lets users choose how much profanity they want to let into their reading experience has acquired users in 70 countries, and plenty of reactions along the way. With Clean Reader, users have the choice of how they wish the text of their books to display — Clean (no F-words or the like), Cleaner, Squeaky Clean, or Off, to see it in its original form. Words in question are replaced by a blue dot that can be tapped to view a suggested substitution.” (via Canoe)

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Libraries Are Concerned About the Lack of New e-books in the Kindle Format

“Libraries all over the US have expressed concern to Good e-Reader that the vast majority of new e-book titles from Overdrive are not available in the Kindle format.  The few books that have been made available are from small presses and not major publishers.  Is this something to be worried about? Overdrive has the largest market share in facilitating digital e-books, audiobooks and videos to libraries all over the United States. Chances are if your local branch offers digital content, its from Overdrive.  They are also the only company that offers e-books in the Kindle format.” (via GoodEReader)

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REVIEW: OPEN E-BOOK FORMAT COMES WITH HEADACHES

“In the world of e-books, you largely have a choice between Amazon’s Kindle and everyone else. Amazon.com Inc. distributes its e-books in a proprietary format that isn’t compatible with other devices and systems. Other companies have embraced a format called EPub. In theory, that means books bought for one non-Kindle device can be read on another. This is important because the device you own today might not be the one you’ll want five years from now. You won’t want to buy all your e-books again.” (via The Associated Press)

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Oyster, Scribd Add Macmillan E-books; Frontlist Grows

“E-book subscription services Oyster and Scribd have added another big five publisher, announcing they both are adding 1,000 titles from Macmillan. Oyster now claims to offer over 1 million titles; Scribd claims more than 500,000, and both say the number of frontlist titles on their lists is growing. Macmillan joins Simon & Schuster and HarperCollins in offering titles through Oyster and Scribd as both services added such Macmillan authors as Ursula K. LeGuin, Mario Vargas Llosa, Michel Foucault, and Orson Scott Card.” (via Publishers Weekly)

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No Luddite libraries here: 95 percent of U.S. libraries carry e-books

Memories of the library typically conjure up rows and rows of delightfully musty-smelling books — but these days, almost all U.S. libraries have embraced the e-book, too. A whopping 95 percent of American public libraries now offer e-books to their patrons, according to a recent report from the publications ‘Library Journal’ and ‘School Library Journal’ (spotted by tech blog Gizmodo). That figure is up sharply from 89 percent in both 2012 and 2013. And the remaining five percent of libraries aren’t against e-books. It’s “far and away” budget problems that keep them from going digital, according to the report.” (via TODAY.com)

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