Friday, January 31, 2014

Seslenen Kitap is the First Audio Book Shop in Turkey

Seslenen Kitap

Seslenen Kitap which in local dialect means 'The Book That Speaks' has become the first audio bookshop in Turkey. The audio books which the authorities claim have been priced quite reasonably can be bought outright or can be presented to others as a gift. On offer will be audio books from some of the most contemporary writers of the country which includes the likes of Canan Tan, Ayşe Kulin, Buket Uzuner, Can Dündar and so on. Twelve of the writers have also lent their voice to record at least one of their books which makes the first phase of the project. Those behind the endeavor have stated plans are already afoot to include more writers in future.

One can have more information from the company website which also includes voice samples of the authors reading aloud their own writings.

Seslenen Kitap is the First Audio Book Shop in Turkey is a post from: E-Reader News

Recorded Books LLC Taken Over by Wasserstein


Recorded Books LLC have changed hands with Wasserstein & Co. being the new owners of the premier company that has been providing unabridged audiobooks and other digital content or related services to schools, libraries and the open market. Recorded Books has to its credit more than 13,500 exclusive audiobooks and has extensive operations in the US, UK and Australia. Recorded Books also has more than 100,000 ebooks to offer libraries via its proprietary OneClick Digital platform, along with a dozen other electronic resources which includes Zinio, a provider of digital magazines for various ereading platforms. Recorded Books also maintains a distribution agreement with IndieFlix, a streaming movie service.

Speaking of the development, Rich Freese, President and CEO of Recorded Books said, “We are excited to work with Wasserstein & Co., whose expertise in the stewardship of content-owning media businesses will enable us to expand our leadership position in the audiobook, eBook, and digital content markets. This strategic partnership provides us with the resources to further broaden our content offerings and services for customers, and accelerate our growth into additional global markets.”

“Recorded Books is a premier audiobook publisher, drawing from the days when it pioneered the industry over thirty years ago,” commented Anup Bagaria, Co-Managing Partner of Wasserstein & Co. “With a proven management team, a portfolio of high quality exclusive content, and proprietary technology, Recorded Books is well-positioned to capitalize on the shift from physical audiobook formats to digital content. We look forward to working closely with the Recorded Books team as it continues to build on its long-standing customer relationships and track record of strong growth.”

Rick Noble, CEO of Haights Cross Communications too sounded optimistic of the new arrangement, saying: “With their world-class digital platform and new eBook offering rapidly gaining momentum, the timing is perfect for Recorded Books to be joining a quality, growth-oriented private equity firm like Wasserstein & Co. We wish them all every success.”

Recorded Books LLC Taken Over by Wasserstein is a post from: E-Reader News

Top 10 New Android Apps of the Week – Jan 31 2014


This week has been dominated by Flappy Bird, the seminal new app that has been resulting in broken phones and tablets. Vine has been exploding with rage quits and Youtube has had lots of videos of people doing really well. Today, we look at the best new apps of the week.

Flappy Bird – The basic premise of the game is simple: keep your bird aloft and guide it between a series of pipes for as long as you can. For each pipe you safely negotiate you get one point. Hitting a pipe or running aground ends the game. That's it.

Tuned In – We all love TV. Share what you love about it using this app for the chance to appear on national television. Download the Tuned In app and watch TV on February 6 starting at 8:58PM EST to follow the instructions in a unique real-time interactive TV experience launching the app. The app will activate on February 6 prior to the interactive event and remain active afterward for anytime use.

Scrap Tank – In a world dominated by sinister robots, take control of the Scrap Tank and take the fight to them! Battle your way through the metal onslaught using an impressive array of hi-tech weapons. Do you have what it takes to survive against endless hordes of tanks, jets, airstrikes, missiles, helicopters and kamikaze bots?

Restaurant Story: Valentine’s – The #1 FREE virtual restaurant game returns with Restaurant Story: Valentine's Day!
Decorate a Restaurant to celebrate the Valentine's Day holiday, and share with your friends! Impress your customers with fun, delicious decorations and tasty romantic treats! Leave them coming back for more and bringing their loved ones to stuff their appetites this Valentine's Day.

Minigore 2: Zombies – Minigore 2 is an award-winning action game starring Egoraptor! Dual-stick shooter masterpiece from the creators of Ice Rage, KingHunt and Bike Baron.
You must help John Gore fight his way through sunny lakes, graveyards and freezing plains into a stormy forest. The legendary Metusalem has brought to life murderous chefs, giant lumberjacks, killer penguins, a single moose and the entire undead army of the Cossack General.

Olympic TV – App, using the Olympic Video Player (OVP), is an exciting live video service, enabling users to watch live and on-demand video of all competition sessions at the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games (live competition during Feb. 6, 2014 – Feb. 23 2014).

Animal Zoo – help animals – Wow, so many species of lovely animals are in the zoo! But what makes it really strange is that those adorable animals are all look so downhearted! Oops! Some of them are starving while some of them are ill. Let's help those little poor things to regain vitality.

Nexercise = fun weight loss - Best app ever. This is one of the best motivation apps to date. I am constantly trying to get more xp then my friends and I got to say, It's fun! Since I have been using this app I have lost a total of 24+ pounds and only need to lose about 20 more pounds! If you are having trouble losing weight than this app is great for you!"

Energy Bar – Adds a configurable Energy Bar at the top of your screen indicating current Battery level. And just when you think, such a simple bar can display such a crucial information, try plugging in your charger – you'll be amazed by the details of the animation you'll see. The pulsating animation and the bar together not only indicates the current Battery level but also how much has the Battery charged since you plugged in your charger.

Music Quiz – The world's most popular music quiz has finally arrived in your country with content selected especially for your country ! The concept is simple. It's just like 'name that tune': listen to the song extract and find the name of the song or artist! How many will you recognise?

Top 10 New Android Apps of the Week – Jan 31 2014 is a post from: E-Reader News

Humble Bundle Hires Publishing Mercenary Kelley L. Allen


Humble Bundle has had a number of highly successful eBook campaigns and has recently experimented with audiobooks. The company wants a continued focus on literary content and has just hired Kelley L. Allen as its Director of eBooks.

Kelley was formerly the Director of New Media at Random House and Director of eBook Acquisition at Sony. She was also Manager of ePublishing at Hachette, Manager of Publisher Relations and Marketing at and Director, eBookstore and Publishing Relations at Diesel eBooks. She recently left Kobo, as their Vendor Manager to join Humble Bundle in San Francisco. This girl is basically a mercenary, attracted to oportonity and money, with little to no loyalty to the companies she works for.

“We’re super excited to have Kelley on the Humble team,” said Steven Kovensky, VP of Partnerships & Strategy at Humble Bundle. “She brings a deep knowledge of the eBook world, and with her guidance we look forward to delivering many compelling bundles to our fans.”

Humble Bundle Hires Publishing Mercenary Kelley L. Allen is a post from: E-Reader News

New Flipboard Feature Lets Readers Target Content

Opinions may vary on the topic, but–for better or worse–digital publishing has meant a never-before-seen amount of content. Whether it’s ebook overload, the nearly impossible search features in many app stores, or the piles upon piles of digital magazines, readers can often feel so overwhelmed that they simply stop engaging with the content.

Flipboard, which first came on the publishing startup scene several years ago, has found that curation is what its readers want. By creating a more magazine-like feel to its new features, the content driver will help readers sort through stories to only those that target their key interests.

One such feature is the new Cover Stories, which allows users to bring only the top stories on a given topic together from their subscriptions, as well as opt to bring top stories from only certain selected news sources. Like the popular Twitter papers, this screen allows users to see headlines on a similar topic, as well as headlines from their favorite subscriptions.

This lumping-together of content based on user criteria is designed to combat one of the chief complaints that digital reading subscribers have, namely that they are drowning in a never ending amount of content. A user could spend hours every day wading through streams of digital news stories, only to find the process repeated the following day. By bringing together the highlights while still affording readers the ability to tap into longer articles, more consumers can feel as though they are getting real value from their digital subscriptions instead of letting the data fall by the wayside.

This new feature adds to the existing ability consumers have always enjoyed to basically create their own personalized magazines through the content they subscribe to, as well as adding content directly from the web with the Bookmarklet plugin.

New Flipboard Feature Lets Readers Target Content is a post from: E-Reader News

Microsoft Slashes Price of Several Windows 8.1 Tablet at its Stores

Dell Venue 8 Pro

Microsoft has slashed prices of several Windows tablet devices that are being offered via its stores, both online and physical. Among the tablets that can now be picked up for cheap include the Dell Venue 8 Pro which has seen a $70 drop in price from the original $299. This does make the offering quite lucrative for a tablet that offers 32 GB of storage. Also at $229, the Dell Venue 8 Pro is slam bang in the territory of 2013 Nexus 7 that offers 16 GB of storage and an inch less of screen space (but with more pixels) for the same price.

Among the others to benefit from the price cut include the Lenovo Miix 2 and the Toshiba Encore which can now be picked up for $249, down from the original $299. Similarly, the Dell Venue 8 Pro with 64 GB onboard now costs $299, a steep drop over the original $349. The Samsung ATIV 3 has been provided an even steeper price cut, now retailing at $499 from the original $699.

Microsoft is desperate to see Windows based tablet gain larger visibility among consumers. Its own Surface range has had an excellent fourth quarter and is hoping to push sales of other brands with the hope of creating a large enough user base of the Windows 8.1 platform in the tablet sphere. Chip maker Intel too will be a direct beneficiary of the above move. Interestingly, both Microsoft and Intel have found themselves in a somewhat similar situation with the rapid proliferation of tablet devices and both have a lot to gain from increased sales of Windows based tablets. Worth mentioning here, all the tablet devices mentioned above are built around Intel Bay Trail Z3740D chips that have won accolades owing to their battery saving and performance attributes. What is also interesting is that Microsoft is not extending the generosity to its own Surface range that continues to retail at the original price tags.

Microsoft Slashes Price of Several Windows 8.1 Tablet at its Stores is a post from: E-Reader News

New Marvel Comics API Program Released


Marvel Comics has done the unthinkable and released a new set of tools that will allow app and web developers to integrate their site with comic data. The new Marvel Comics API taps into Marvel’s vast library of comics—from what’s coming up, to 70 years ago. This represents the first API program by any major comic book publisher and provides an innovative way for fans to interact with Marvel Entertainment and Marvel's digital content.

The Marvel Comics API is a set of web services that give fans access to Marvel’s rich repository of data about over 30,000 comics and 7,000 series.  The API lets fans access information from Marvel's 75-year publishing history, including cover art, characters and comic book crossover events. Developers will now have the opportunity to create personal applications and websites that express their individual appreciation and experiences with Marvel Comics. From feeds on blogs to mini-applications, developers everywhere can use the Marvel Comics API to create compelling digital experiences using Marvel's treasure trove of data.

Developers can can access only six resource types using the API and all offer a wellspring of options, they are; Comics: individual print and digital comic issues, collections and graphic novels. For example: Amazing Fantasy #15.
Comic series: sequentially numbered (well, mostly sequentially numbered) groups comics with the same title. For example, Uncanny X-Men.
Comic stories: indivisible, reusable components of comics. For example, the cover from Amazing Fantasy #15 or the origin of Spider-Man story from that comic.
Comic events and crossovers: big, universe-altering storylines. For example, Infinity Creators: women, men and organizations who create comics. For example, Jack Kirby. Characters: the women, men, organizations, alien species, deities, animals, non-corporeal entities, trans-dimensional manifestations, abstract personifications, and green amorphous blobs which occupy the Marvel Universe (and various alternate universes, timelines and altered realities therein). For example, Spider-Man.

Peter Olson, VP of Web & Application Development says, "Our API program is a cool new way to explore and interact with Marvel Comics. Unlike lists of books, movies, or news articles, our comics are an inter-connected web (no Spidey pun intended!) of data spanning 75 years.  It’s the relationships between them that are fascinating. Everything is connected and continues to expand as more comics are released each week.  With our API program, once again, Marvel is changing the comics and publishing technology landscape.”

Developers can create accounts, access the API, test drive queries in interactive forms, read documentation and ask questions at Marvel's new Developer Portal at

New Marvel Comics API Program Released is a post from: E-Reader News

NOOBS SD cards back in the Swag Store!

The 8GB pre-flashed NOOBS SD cards we had in the Swag Store sold out pretty much immediately: we’ve just had another shipment arrive, so get them while they’re hot. At £4 including VAT, plus £1 UK shipping if you’re not buying other swag (please buy more swag), this is the cheapest way to get 8GB of SD memory you’ll find, and you get NOOBS bundled for free.

These are Class 6* Samsung micro-SD cards in an SD converter. This card has outperformed many Class 10 cards in our tests, because of the way Samsung handle read/write. The cards optimised for random read/write cycles, unlike the vast majority of cards on the market (which are designed for cameras and video cameras, which read and write at very regular intervals).

*Eben says he is to blame for something which will please those of you who already have a NOOBS SD card: we’ve been mis-describing them as Class 4, when they’re actually Class 6. I was hoping there’d be an interesting story behind the mistake, but there isn’t; it’s just boring old human error. Sorry! (And congratulations to all those of you who bought one earlier and are now the proud owners of an even whizzier SD card than you thought.)

I Love the ‘90s: Nostalgia eBooks and audiobooks

90sNostalgiaI'm a child of the '90s.  Growing up, I loved reading the The Baby-sitter's Club series and R.L. Stine's Goosebumps; my VHS tapes of The Little Mermaid and Beauty and the Beast were in heavy rotation; and I watched Nickelodeon almost every day.

For people of a certain age, '90s nostalgia is high right now. Mention a popular kid's show from the decade, like Rugrats, and you'll likely see eyes light up for handfuls of adults in their twenties and thirties. Several recent eBooks and audiobooks take a look into pop culture from the end of the 20th century, focusing especially on what one title dubs "Nickelodeon's golden age":

Slimed! An Oral History of Nickelodeon's Golden Age – Mathew Klickstein

While the book is an unwieldy oral history and can at times be hard to follow, people who grew up watching Nickelodeon in the late '80s and early '90s will get a kick out of reading about some of the behind-the-scenes stories from shows like Hey Dude, Ren & Stimpy and The Adventures of Pete & Pete.

Melissa Explains It All – Melissa Joan Hart


Melissa Marin is a Marketing Specialist at OverDrive.


The Baby Name Wizard

The OKCupid statistics blog, by Christian Rudder, is amazing. Sadly, it hasn’t updated since 2011, around when OKCupid was bought by (Rudder says the timing was a coincidence—he took time off for another project, and the blog may return soon!)

In the meantime, I’d like to recommend another unexpectedly engrossing blog: The Baby Name Wizard blog, by Laura Wattenberg (creator of the amazing Name Voyager graphing tool).

I find the Baby Name Wizard blog fascinating because, like the OK Cupid Blog, it combines two key ingredients:

  • Access to rich data about something that comes up all the time in our lives
  • The ability to find and tell the stories in that data

The reason I like the blog has nothing to do with naming babies. (I’m not allowed to name babies, anyway.)

I like it because we all encounter names every day, all the time, in every part of our life. We all have feelings and opinions about what names mean, but if you’re like me, they were mostly unconscious, unquestioned, and never subject to any statistical rigor. (Freakonomics has a well-known chapter about naming trends, which Wattenberg takes issue with).

Nevaeh (“Heaven” backward) is currently a more popular baby name than Sarah.  Brooklyn is more popular than either, and Sophia is more popular than all three combined. In 20 years, those names will conjure up images of college kids, and Brandon and Sarah will sound as much like Mom and Dad names as Gary and Debby do to my generation.

If you’re like most people, you probably had some opinions when you read the names in the last paragraph. But maybe the biggest thing I’ve learned from reading this blog is that the reactions and stereotypes that names provoke often reveal more interesting stories than the names themselves.

For example, you may have heard the urban legend about a mother who named her daughter Le-a, pronounced “Ledasha”. Wattenberg dissects this urban legend in an insightful essay (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3), which explains how apocryphal names like Le-a serve, across a wide variety of communities, as proxies for talking about race.

Here are a few of the other things I’ve learned from the blog:

That’s just a tiny sampling; if you think any of it sounds interesting, I recommend browsing through the blog’s extensive archives.

GPS-tracking helmet cam

Martin O’Hanlon’s a familiar name in these parts, especially for fans of Minecraft: his repository of Pi Minecraft tricks and tutorials is one of our favourite resources. But Martin’s not all about magicking Menger-Sierpinski Sponges into the Minecraft universe: he does wonderful stuff with hardware and the Raspberry Pi too. Here’s some footage from his latest:

What you’re looking at here is something we haven’t seen before: camera footage with a GPS overlay, showing the route Martin has skied and his current speed. (Gordon, who has his own helmet cam hack, is quivering with envy.) Martin’s setup, like all the best Raspberry Pi hacks, also involves tupperware. It’s a one-button, one-led design, so it’s as easy as possible to use when you’re wearing ski gloves.

Work in progress

You can find everything you’ll need to construct your own at Martin’s Stuff about Code; he’s also done a very detailed writeup of the design process and included plenty of construction tips, along with the usual code and parts list. Thanks Martin!

Amazon Lets Customers Give Back for Books with Amazon Smile

As if memberships for free shipping, low thresholds for delivery options, and discount incentives weren’t already enough to sway consumers, Amazon is making it possible for its customers to feel good about their purchases through charitable contributions.

The company’s program, Amazon Smile (named in reference to the iconic swooping shape on its boxes), lets consumers designate a 501(c)(3) charitable organization to receive 0.5% of the order price when the purchase was made through the website. While still using their same Amazon accounts–including any registries or wish lists they may have created–customers who access the site through a browser (not through an e-reader or Kindle app) can find products that are designated as eligible for the donation.

Of the nearly one million organizations that are already eligible to receive these no-consumer-cost donations, several are related to authorship and the book industry, including World Book Night, The Office of Letters and Light (NaNoWriMo), and Books for Africa, along with a host of other recognized non-profit charities related to furthering literacy, education, and writing. Consumers can change their charitable recipients at any time, essentially letting them designate a different charity each month, if they desired.

While not all items are eligible for the donation program items that are eligible will be designated on the product detail page. In order to benefit the charities, purchases must be made through Amazon Smile, and not the standard Amazon web page. For more information, go to the Smile information page.

Amazon Lets Customers Give Back for Books with Amazon Smile is a post from: E-Reader News