Electronic Publications

Electronic Books Are Still Far From an Easy Read

KAREN KAPLAN, LATimes Staff Writer spent a couple of weeks testing two electronic books now on the market: NuvoMedia\'s Rocket EBook and the SoftBook Reader by SoftBook Press. Read it HERE

She says\"
All in all, the e-books are reminiscent of the early personal computers from the 1970s. You can tell their time will come, but it\'s not here yet. Someday, books printed on paper will be replaced by lightweight digital readers that can store hundreds of titles, download books from the Web that cost a fraction of the price of their pulpy ancestors, and even eliminate the need for a light while reading in bed at night.
That day is still far away.

E-Authors Make a Killing

Wired has this interesting Story on how authors are using the Web and DIY to start a career.

Publishers are paying more than attention to promotion-savvy e-authors who are building readership one chapter at a time. They\'re paying sizable advances -- especially to authors of fantastic tales.
The Internet is proving to be the milieu of choice for authors to post their serialized fiction

E-Pubs gaining speed

Someone suggested these 2 stories on epubs.

This one from Salon.In three years\' time, electronic-book devices will weigh less than a pound, run eight hours and cost as little as $99. By 2009, expect e-books to outsell the traditional paper variety in many categories, and in 2020, Webster\'s dictionary will alter the definition of \"book\" to include titles read onscreen. In typical Microsoft style, Hill figures that if Redmond puts its weight behind the idea, it can move mountains. \"It\'s one thing for a small device-manufacturer to go to a publisher and ask them to put titles in electronic form. It\'s quite another for Microsoft to do it,\" he says.

and this one from the gomez advisors

Visitors to Borders.com can click on links to three unrelated sites, each of which offer a selection of e-books and technologies to read them. In addition to giving customers variety, the plan will also allow Borders to learn more about which technologies and formats its customers prefer.

Borders has lagged behind its competitors in using the Web to help create customer loyalty. But now bibliophiles will have direct links to Peanut Press, which offers titles that can be read on a Palm Pilot; ION Systems, which provides technology to read books on personal computers; and SoftBook Press, which offers a dedicated hand-held device for electronic reading.


This Story from Phillynews on UPenn going digital.

Aided by a $218,000 grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Penn\'s library has begun publishing online every new history work that Oxford University Press produces over five years, roughly 1,500 titles.
Sixty-four complete digital replicas of printed books already are available for free to members of the Penn community through the library\'s digital books Web site. Penn librarians were briefed on the project last week. Those outside Penn can sample three books from the public portion of the site, HERE.\"For a long time I have been interested in books online and how they might impact the future of publishing,\" Barry said.
Mosher recalled: \"We were talking about the fact that the world seems to be divided into people who believe that in 10 years all books will be digital, and people who say, \'Never during our lifetimes will that happen! Who wants to read a bloody digital book?\'
\"What we thought was that there was too much emotion and not enough empirical evidence about the behavior of people reading [digital] books.\"

The future of the book

Someone sent in This Story from the desertnews, it takes a good
look at ebooks.

Nancy Tessman is director of the Salt
Lake City Library, the institution that has become the Utah
focal point of the recent Library of Congress project, the
Center for the Book.
\"There\'s room for it all,\" she says. \"At the library,
we\'re not seeing anything but the traditional book format.
There is absolutely no sign of a lack of devotion to the
book itself. People want access to technological
information, but it is an option. The more access people
have, whether on the Web or on television, the more they
turn to traditional forces. Our book circulation is up

E-Books slowly gaining ground

Here\'s a story, from The Star-Telegram, on the business side of epublishing. More and more stories report on how epubs are going mainstream.

But lately there are signs emerging that the traditional literary community is
warming to a new alien form; Time Warner Trade Publishing wants to post
chapters or excerpts from coming books on the Fatbrain site and the company\'s
chief executive, Laurence J. Kirshbaum, calls the concept \"brilliant.\" And some
prominent authors and agents are beginning to place short works or out-of-print
books on the site, which is already a literary refuge for amateur writers yearning
to share their oeuvres -- \"Psoriasis -- My 35-Year-Itch That Vanished\" or \"Did
Russia Send Us AIDS?\"

E-Book in the stores

wired has a small Story about the first E-Book to make it into stores. This is what many see as the future of books, and libraries.

Author Carol Givner\'s book, Bing, Bang, Boom,published by Book-On-Disc is the first e-book to make the crossover to the bookshelves of the major chains.

Eight Barnes & Noble superstores are now
stocking the novel­-on-a-disk, which is showing up on the new-releases table right alongside John Grisham\'s latest hardcover.
\"There\'s no e-book section in any of these stores yet,\" said Givner, \"but that\'s just a matter of time.\" In readings, Givner attracts crowds of 50 or more who heard about her erotic thrillers through Internet buzz.

Ink-on-Newsprint Periodicals Disappearing Into Cyberspace

SFGate has an interesting opinion piece on the future of the newspaper.

Irony abounds today in the newspaper industry. I\'m convinced that its ink-on-paper product -- the one you\'re likely holding in your hands now -- is doomed. Yet this is hard for most people in my business to imagine, because net profit margins are a healthy 10 percent and ad revenues are booming.

Hear Here - Talking books on the net

There has been some buzz lately on how the future of the net is not really the printed word, but rather the spoken one. Newsbytes has a story on Amazon buying into a Talking-Book Digitizer-audio company Audible. Read more Here

Remember Audible also has a deal with Microsoft.

Ebook resources

CNET has a great beginners guide to ebooks HERE

But don\'t say goodbye to your hardcovers just yet. No one knows if the majority will
take to digitized reading. Changing paradigms--especially for something as basic as reading--takes time,
and the quirks of these early-generation products won\'t help. Even under the best circumstances, it will be
years before you see e-books on every street corner.


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