The Sony Digital Paper is experiencing robust sales to industry professionals who demand a large e-paper screen. In order to broaden their reach and scope, Sony has just announced a price reduction on the DPT-S1 from $999 to $799.
The Sony Digital Paper originally hit the market one year ago and the intention behind this 13.3 e-reader was establishing a new product category. Instead of being aimed at consumers, like Amazon and Kobo, Sony made the gambit of constructing a device aimed exclusively towards people who need a world class PDF experience.
The DPT-S1 Digital Paper was first available at $1200 and higher education, lawyers and people involved in entertainment were the first ones to purchase the device. Once Sony had established an extensive sales record they discounted the price to $999 and started to sell it online to anyone who wanted one. The $799 price point now makes the Digital Paper extremely viable to not only professionals now, but the average consumer.
If you pay attention to the e-reader sector you would have inevitably heard of e-ink Mobius. This is a flexible plastic based material that Sony had co-developed with e Ink Holdings. It weights 50% less than your traditional glass based TFT display and despite the 13.3 inch nature of the screen, it weighs less than a 9.7 inch Kindle DX.
Sony has pioneered a new market for e-readers and this has spurned their competition into developing new products. Pocketbook is developing a 13.3 inch solution called the CAD, which is aimed at architects and designers who tend to use 3D modeling programs such as Maya or 3D Studio Max. Dasung has developed a 13.3 inch display that was designed to be a secondary screen for a PC and Onyx is in the process of making a commercial version of a 13.3 inch e-reader aimed at people who love reading e-book novels.
The price reduction from $999 to $799 is primarily attributed to making the DPT-S1 more accessible. Likely this price will make sense to a lot of people looking for a large screen reader to use in their professional life.
Tuesday, March 31, 2015
Beginning in May there will be a new Surface 3 tablet in town, and this time it’s a more affordable version of Microsoft’s flagship Surface Pro 3. While the Surface Pro 3 floated on the high-end of tablet pricing starting at $799 USD, the new Surface 3 begins at a much lower $499 USD.
Aimed at students and families, this new Surface 3 doesn’t appear to sacrifice features and function to lower the price-tag; powered by a 64-bit Intel Atom x7 processor, displaying HD graphics on a 10.8-inch 1920×1280 screen, taking photos with a front-facing 3.5MP camera or 8MP rear-facing camera, and outfitted with 2GB of RAM and 64GB of storage. You may not get the keyboard thrown in at that entry-level cost, but it does ship with Window 8.1 (with the promise of a free upgrade to Windows 10 once it hits general availability).
My favourite feature is the built-in kickstand… it’s so simple and elegant, I can’t believe Apple hasn’t stolen the idea yet.
Generally speaking, Microsoft has taken the closest aim at business customers (who are usually willing to pay a higher price as compared to the average mobile consumer), but having a less expensive model makes it tremendously more appealing for those wanting to outfit their families with the same device they use at the office. It also helps when the Surface is being marketed as having the full capabilities of a laptop (including a full USB 3.0 port, Mini DisplayPort, and a MicroSD card reader) –making it a very attractive option for those of us with children who need these kinds of devices for school work while doing double duty as a much-sought-after tablet as well.
Add in the Surface Pen (for an additional cost of course), and you’ve got a powerful note-taking machine for those who may not type during a meeting or class as fast as they can write (not forgetting you can also use it to sketch a quick diagram, add notes to the margins of your PDF files, and paint with it on-screen as if were a brush on canvas… heck, you can even handwrite musical scores or do your crossword puzzles easily using the pen as long as you are willing to pay for the requisite titles like the New York Times Crossword app in the Windows store).
Bottom line? It’s a contender (particularly if the Surface 3 can truly get 10 hours of moderate-use battery life from a single charge).
Release video is linked below for those of you who would like to see a little more of this new tablet before it begins shipping in May (with pre-orders available starting today).
That’s why Goodreads, the online community based on reader-centric book interaction, has launched a redesign to its Android app. This update will present a cleaner interface for mobile device reading, as well as put users’ favorite features at their fingertips.
According to a release from Goodreads about the newly updated app, “The app now features an easy-to-use navigation that puts your favorite features at your fingertips, and a cleaner design to help you discover great books and share your reading with friends…Now you can immediately discover new books your friends are reading, and still check your shelves on the go with just one tap. We've also included a fun new touch, a literary quote on the home screen while the app opens.”
Reader reaction has been a little mixed but mostly positive, with many of the commenters asking for visibility on the home screen of their standing in the 2015 Book Challenge, one of the very popular features of the website. Others pointed to the book recommendations, something that Goodreads and parent company Amazon have prided themselves on, as one of the better uses for the app. The portability of an app like this is especially useful for book browsing and reading reviews on the go, especially as consumers make a concerted effort to shop in brick-and-morter and indie bookstores where reviews are less available. The app is currently available for download from the Google Play and Amazon app stores.
|The Metropolitan Museum of Art offers over 50 years of out-of-print publications on art history for free online. You can view the books with a web browser and download full copies as PDF files. The paperback and hardcover versions of some of these titles cost over a hundred dollars each. So being able to get […]|
OverDrive is happy to announce that support for Preorders in OverDrive Marketplace is now available for all libraries and schools, including consortia. Now, your library's digital collection has another reason to be the first stop for the hottest pre-release titles. With Preorders, you won't miss any big releases. This highly requested feature allows libraries and schools to preorder titles as many as 6 months ahead of the "street date" (date available to the public). Users can then place holds on Preorder titles on your public-facing site, and they will be among the first to enjoy new releases as soon as they become available on the street date.
OverDrive worked with several librarians during the development process to assure that this new feature provided real benefits for selectors. Monty Masseurs, Collection Development librarian of Wellington City Libraries said, "We have many selectors choosing eBooks and audiobooks from OverDrive and having the ability to differentiate between Preorders and currently available titles in carts makes a lot of sense. It'll definitely help our team to track their monthly expenditure which is always of value."
In Marketplace, Preorder titles are designated by a distinct Preorder font color with prominent messaging so they can be easily spotted. You can add Preorder titles to your cart, and when the cart is "purchased", the titles will be available on your site (for holds only) but your library will not be invoiced until the street date. Carts provide a convenient total for Preorder titles separate from the rest of the cart. Please note, the metadata (including price) for Preorder titles may change prior to the street date.
At launch, we will begin with a segment of our catalog, including the Big 5 publishers among others, and additional publishers will be added in the following months.
To help you identify and gather data on Preorder titles, the following reports have been updated: Collection Statistics, Current Waiting List, Library Statistics, and Purchase Order History. You will also find the following lists of the hottest Preorders featured in the Marketplace "Must Haves" for your convenience.
Hottest Books (most popular next six months) http://bit.ly/1Ey4Yu4
Hottest Books of April http://bit.ly/1FLtrJq
Hottest Books of April (Kids & Teens) http://bit.ly/1BKUYXd
Hottest Books of May http://bit.ly/1C4FjIW
Hottest Books of May (Kids & Teens) http://bit.ly/1BnR7Up
Hottest Books of June http://bit.ly/1FGXLoy
Hottest Books of June (Kids & Teens) http://bit.ly/1bqCIgF
Hottest Books of July http://bit.ly/1C7OPbg
Hottest Books of July (Kids & Teens) http://bit.ly/1DbIZsj
Hottest Books of August http://bit.ly/1BKR28R
Hottest Books of August (Kids & Teens) http://bit.ly/1b1ZqeT
Hottest Books of Fall http://bit.ly/1FL9a6J
Hottest Books of Fall (Kids & Teens) http://bit.ly/1Fg3zHJ
If you have any questions on how to work with Preorders, please contact your OverDrive Collection Specialist.
|Amazon has started offering a white version of the current basic entry-level Kindle in China and Japan. The new white Kindle is available on a pre-order basis from Amazon.co.jp and Amazon.cn, and will be released on April 8th. It’s considerably odd that the white variation is only available in China and Japan. Usually any new […]|
In case you hadn’t noticed, Issue 32 of The MagPi, the Raspberry Pi magazine, came out at the end of last week – and we think it’s terrific.
This month’s issue is packed with tutorials, reviews, features about your Pi projects, and much more. As always, you’ll find lots and lots of content from the Pi community. Build an IoT door lock with Dr Simon Monk! See if Willem Koopman can gurn so extravagantly that Open CV won’t recognise his face as a face! Dr Sam Aaron will walk you through some Sonic Pi tips and tricks, and we continue the series on writing games in Python.
You can win a Raspberry Pi model A+; learn about some of the Raspberry Pi crowdfunding projects that shot for the moon (and find out which ones missed); and have an in-depth look at our distributed weather station project, the work Naturebytes is doing with the Pi, UNICEF’s Raspberry Pi work with Syrian refugees, and much, much more.
As always the MagPi is a free download. (If you’d like to support us by buying a copy on Google Play or the Apple App Store so you can use the magazine on your tablet, we’d be really grateful – but we are committed to making sure a PDF will always be available for free.) This is Russell Barnes’ second month as editor; we think he’s doing an amazing job.
Head over to www.raspberrypi.org/magpi/ to get your copy!
This month, the Kids & Teens edition of our eHighlights catalog has a mix of exciting new titles, as well as some reissued classics that would both fit wonderfully into your existing collection.
Nickelodeon titles have recently been added to OverDrive to include the best from SpongeBob SquarePants and Dora the Explorer, among other reader favorites.
Victoria Aveyard’s Red Queen is a can’t-miss read for teens and Susan Casey’s Women Heroes of the American Revolution is a wonderful title to add diversity and history to the reading list for ages 12 and up.
Georg Rauch's Unlikely Warrior describes Rauch's efforts to help Jews escape from Vienna until he is drafted to the Nazi army, despite his admission that he is of Jewish descent. This book for ages 12 and up shares the details of his harrowing journey.
Dive in to another month of fantastic books and stay tuned for upcoming editions featuring Adult fiction and nonfiction, as well as streaming video!
Emma Kanagaki is a Collection Development Analyst with OverDrive
Amazon has been fixated on piano black e-readers and tablets since the Kindle Keyboard. This mentality is apparently changing with the advent of a new ivory white edition of the Kindle Basic Touch. The new e-reader is now available for pre-order for ￥499.00 and the initial batch will be sent out by April 8th.
The ivory white variant of the Kindle Basic Touch will released in China to begin with. This is the first time Amazon has changed the color on an e-reader since 2011, so its a bit of a big deal.
We have heard from a source that Amazon has just filed a mystery device with the FCC. This could potentially be the white edition of the Kindle so Amazon can sell it in the United States.
The Kindle Basic Touch came out in November 2014 and it is the first entry level model to include a touchscreen. It features a six inch display with a resolution of 800 x 600 at 167 ppi. The touchscreen technology is using Infrared, courtesy of Neonode. The fonts and overall screen clarity have been dramatically increased and in a head to head comparison with the Kindle Paperwhite 2, Basic surpassed it in many ways.
Underneath the hood is a 1 GHZ Freescale processor and 512 MB of RAM. Amazon has doubled up the amount of internal memory from 2 GB on prior models of the basic model to 4 GB. This in effect gives you the ability to store more books and PDF files.
Monday, March 30, 2015
Next on the list of big launch events is coming out of LG on April 28 in New York, London, and Paris simultaneously (with an event in Seoul, Singapore the following day, on April 29). There are no guarantees of course, but we have our fingers crossed that it means there will be a new version of their flagship smartphone coming from the South Korean company, the much-anticipated LG G4 (which seems even more likely when you take a close look at the enlarged G’s on the invitation, pictured above).
(If we take the design of the invitation literally, it may also mean that a leather-backed body should also be expected…)
Those loving rumours and speculation will be happy to know that benchmark results have been spotted around the Internet suggesting the LG G4 will run Android 5.1 Lollipop, be powered by a hexa-core 64-bit Snapdragon 808 processor, sport a 5.5-inch QHD display (boasting 1440×2560 pixels), have 3GB of RAM, feature 32GB of on-board storage, and take photos with an 8-megapixel front camera. The exterior design is still somewhat of a mystery, though the expectations are that the phone will be ‘radically different’ than their current LG G3 flagship smartphone.
If LG wants to compete with the big guys out there already (thinking most specifically about the recently launched Samsung Galaxy S6), there had better be a secondary announcement of a phablet-sized version of the G4 –but there is no word yet on how likely that is.
Are any of you looking forward to seeing what LG has to offer? What would persuade you to choose LG over other phones from the reigning Android heavyweights (beyond Samsung’s Galaxy S6, the HTC One M9 has serious competitive potential)?
The promise of a solid race-themed game has been known to motivate the purchase of entire console gaming systems –so the release of a quality title for mobile should be heard as very good news by fans of the genre. Fast & Furious: Legacy covers all seven titles in the film franchise, providing a true journey through the street racing experience.
There aren’t many surprises with this game, but that shouldn’t be seen as a bad thing. In a world that is all about the hottest car models and the thrill of speeding, just being able to participate using a mobile device (in stunning HD) is exciting!
Start with the basics, and spend time customizing your ride (with ‘the hottest paint, vinyls, rims, and more’), unlock extras (like nitrous upgrades), and explore locations based on the movies (from Los Angeles to Miami and beyond); the more you play, the more sophisticated things will become. Run your own crew, battle against others, and find your way to the top of the leaderboards.
You can grab Fast & Furious Legacy for free now for your Android device (but have no fear, you will have plenty of opportunities to spend money in-app with this game).
The e-reader industry is dominated by six inch devices chiefly because of the portability and cost effectiveness. Large screens tend to be very niche and carry a huge price tag. Onyx is hoping to buck this trend with the advent of the i86 HD e-reader which has an 8 inch screen and costs $325.00.
The Onyx i86 HD features an eight inch IR touchscreen with a resolution of 1600 x 1200 with 250 PPI. It does not have a front light like most contemporary e-readers which helps keep the cost down.
This particular e-reader model is not using a super modern version of e-paper, as found on the Kindle Voyage or Kobo H2o, instead it is employing an older form of Pearl. Normally, I would lament the screen quality is poor, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. In reality, reading e-books, manga and PDF files is amazing. Onyx has a bunch of software functions that enhance the rendering of image heavy content.
Underneath the hood is a 1 GHZ single core processor, 512 MB of RAM and 4 GB of internal storage. There is compatibility for an Micro SD, so you can easily enhance it further up to 32 GB.
One of the most exciting features about this reader is the fact it has Bluetooth and a 3.5mm headphone jack. This allows for the playbook of audiobooks and music. In addition, you can hook up external speakers to get a ton of streaming content from companies such as Spotify or Soundcloud.
The Onyx Boox i86 is running Google Android 4.04 as the primary operating system. It comes bundled with Google Play, which gives customers the ability to download their own e-reading apps, without limitations.
When you take this e-reader out of the box for the first time there isn’t very much content on it. There is two e-reading apps and Google Play, and that’s it. There is no library of royalty free e-books to get you started right away, which is a good thing. Many e-readers these days are shipped with a few hundred books on them and are normally instantly deleted to make room for paid content.
When you take the i86 out of the box for the first time there is no digital bookstore bundled on it to start buying e-books, digital magazines, manga, newspapers or audiobooks right away. You will want to employ Google Play with your existing or new account to download your favorite apps.
It is important to note that despite it can run Android apps, it will not play many games. In addition, anything with complex animations will also not give you a good experience. I would recommend Kobo, Nook, Manga Meow, Replico Reader, Adobe PDF Reader as apps that are fully compatible with the i86.
The Onyx i86 HD is not officially released yet and the version we reviewed was the final production model. It is currently available only via EBAY and costs $325.00 US.
I think this e-reader is perfect for people who need a larger screen to read and felt underwhelmed by the Cybook Ocean. I like the fact it has audio capabilities and allows users to install their own apps via Google Play.
Dictionary Support is non-existent
The Young Innovators’ Club is a new initiative to promote engineering and tech education for school-aged children in Mongolia. It’s currently piloting a Raspberry Pi-based after-school club in Mongolia’s capital, Ulaanbaatar, with support from the National Information Technology Park, where activities take place:
Scratch and Python are on the menu, and electronics features prominently, with students using Raspberry Pis to control LEDs, sensors, motors and cameras. Club Coordinator Tseren-Onolt Ishdorj says,
The idea of introducing Raspberry Pi-based after-school clubs was originally that of Enkhbold Zandaakhuu, Chairman of the Mongolian Parliament and himself an engineer by training; a group of interested individuals picked up the idea and established the Club in late 2014, and it has since attracted the interest of peak-time Mongolian TV news and other local media. The Club plans to establish After-School Clubs for Inventors and Innovators (ASCII) across the country with the help of schools, parents and other organisations and individuals; this would involve about 600-700 schools, and include training for over 600 teachers. They’re hopeful of opening a couple of dozen of these this year.
We’re quite excited about this at Raspberry Pi. It was lovely to see our Raspberry Jams map recently showing upcoming events on every continent except for Antarctica (where there are Pis, even if not, as far as we know, any Jams), but nonetheless there’s a displeasing Pi gap across central Asia and Russia:
It’s fantastic to know, then, that school students are learning with Raspberry Pis in Ulaanbaatar. We’ll be keeping up with developments at the Young Innovators’ Club on their Facebook page, where you can find lots of great photos and videos of the students’ work – we hope you’ll take a look, too.
Last week I had the chance to chat with Dr. Laura Bates, author of the Big Library Read title Shakespeare saved my life, via Twitter. Dr. Bates took some time out of her Friday to answer questions curated from readers from around the world. Below are some of the questions and answers. You can view the Twitter chat here and check out some of her extended answers to questions below!
Tell us your first memory of going to a library
Starting around age 5, I would walk 2 miles to the public library with my older sister, in hot summers and snowy winters…checking out as many books as I could carry (often MORE than I could carry). My interests were eclectic: travel, nature, literature. I was a "regular" in my elementary school library, as well. That's where I checked out "Macbeth" at the age of 10. Of course, I couldn't understand it; it was a foreign language to me, but looking back, I can see what a life-changing moment that was for me! My parents, although they were immigrants, were book-lovers, and I inherited that trait.
If the roll was reversed would you feel comfortable w/ a significant other doing the work you do?
What has been your most rewarding moment of this program?
What is your favorite Shakespeare piece?
What message do you hope readers take away of this book?
Adam Sockel is a Social Media Specialist with OverDrive. He now has a new appreciation for the Bard.
One of the recent controversies in publishing involves the creation of an app called Clean Reader that has authors of every level crying censorship. Built by two parents who claim their daughter was upset by the amount and level of profanity in a book she was reading, the app takes an ebook and “filters” out the naughty words with three levels for the reader to choose from. Readers can decide that “damn” is okay but not “f***,” for example, all the way up to the strictest setting that will filter out biological terms for human genitalia.
Personal feelings on sheltering one’s children aside, it’s important to understand how this is not censorship. First, nothing about the original manuscript is actually changed. The author’s original work is still available for sale elsewhere; this would almost be akin to an app selling a translated version of the book, since the author himself cannot speak or write in Swahili and someone else decided what words would appear in the file. Second, by definition censorship requires a larger-scale effort than one reader choosing to read a version of the book with the profanity removed. If the government required the profanity to be removed in order for the book even to be published, that would be censorship.
The debate on both sides has been very interesting. Supporters of the app have stated that this is simply allowing choice for the readers, and that audiences who would have avoided the author’s work entirely for its word choices can now support the author and take part in the dialogue about the book. Other supporters have pointed out that this was a parent-driven effort, and that we should applaud these parents for not taking the typical route of complaining to the school and having the book pulled from the shelves. They didn’t interfere with other children’s enjoyment of the book, they simply provided an avenue (at their own expense) for their daughter to read roughly the same books as her peers–with their same tones, plots, and themes–without having to wade through words that the child herself found objectionable.
Where things got tricky was in the selling of the books through Clean Reader. Basically, the app isn’t capable of taking any document in any file format and simply replacing certain words. The book has to get the “cleaning” treatment and then be available for sale. While supporters can easily take the stance that authors should be grateful for any sale they get, this did irk a number of authors, and for good reason. It’s one thing to filter a book at the reader’s discretion, as that would be like flipping past the sex scenes in an erotica title to get to the story. It’s something else altogether when a bookstore owner rips out the pages that contain “smut” and then sells the book on her shelves with the claim that it is “clean.”
The saddest issue in this controversy is the argument that profanity in published books is a fact and that readers should have to simply put up with it because that’s how the author wrote it; the point was even made that the couple who developed the app are “sheltering” their daughter from the real world by not letting her read books with bad words in them. Critics of this app have basically said the authors’ craft is more important than the readers’ sensibilities. This would be far more understandable a concern if most consumers knew how much an author’s work is stripped away in the editorial process by major publishers, and then understood that self-published authors often chose to pursue indie authorship because random gatekeepers had deemed their book wasn’t fit or worthy enough for mass market publication. Telling an author that there’s now one more level of censor before the book can be read can sting.
Unfortunately, there’s a middle ground that could be reached, and neither side has looked for it. The answer may not be simple, of course, but nothing like this ever is. This app could have been incredibly helpful for teachers who wish to support indie authors or who wish to use controversial titles in their whole-group class instruction, but instead that tool is no longer available to them as the Clean Reader developers have ceased selling books through their app’s bookstore for the time being. Consumers who flocked to Clean Reader have also been left with a bad taste in their mouths over the idea that their dollars aren’t good enough–even for self-published authors who arguably could use the money–if it means taking out a few cuss words.
Clean Reader Controversy: Censorship, or Right to Read? is a post from: Good e-Reader
Publishers and retailers are always looking for new ways for a book to stand out in the crowd. Sometimes they employ well known designers and artists to something visually compelling with an anniversary edition or bookstores will sometimes employ small motifs for bestsellers such as 50 Shades of Grey. This is all going to change with the advent of 3D printing technology.
In January 2014 Riverhead Books developed a 3D slipcover for And Chang-rae Lee's On Such a Full Sea. Riverhead holds the distinction of being the first publisher to ever do something like this. The white slipcover, into which the book fits neatly, features the letters of the title rising off the surface at an angle, and the idea all along was to do something unlike anything ever seen in the world of publishing, Riverhead's art director, Helen Yentus said "I didn’t even think we'd be able to do it, because it's such a new and innovative technology."
Yentus continues "A couple years ago, we thought this was the end of print and we'd just be going cheaper and cheaper and cheaper until the physical book disappears, because you could just get the e-book. With these special editions, I can't say 100% but I do think that we are trying to create a physical object that people would want to keep and have, probably as a response to the growth of the e-book," she says. "There's a lot of pressure to innovate. For us, at least in my mind, this has turned out to be a really successful result of that search."
The finished design, which took 15 hours to print, was made for a special-edition run of 200 signed copies for sale—a number partially decided by how many could physically be printed in time for the shelf date. Each copy cost $150, so it certainly costs more than your standard e-book.
Retail stores such as Barnes and Noble or Chapters/Indigo could really take advantage of getting the stores designers to come up with a new way to make books stand out. Most books do not have custom display stands and merely sit on tables. If the store was really behind a new book that was coming out and was a surefire bestseller, they could print up a few 3D slipcovers per store in order to capture the shoppers attention. Likely local and national press would cover this story, giving the bookseller something new and cutting edge to talk about.
Publishers could also orchestrate a limited run of a book cover or slipcover that is 3D and even include an autograph by the author. I know if a new book by William Gibson or Neil Gaimon came out and was one of a kind, with a very limited run, I would certainly spend $200 on it and use it as a status symbol.
3D printing is relatively a new thing and traditional industries have yet to employ it in an meaningful way. It tends to chiefly be used by geeks and hobbyists that are looking to get some street cred on Reditt or a message board. As Riverhead Books as demonstrated there is a market for this sort of thing.
Sunday, March 29, 2015
Book Riot is a publishing blog and they have recently been garnering attention due to a post that was published by Brenna Clarke Gray who quit GoodReads. She alleged in a convoluted manor that when she left 2 and 3 star reviews of books the author and their publicists called her out on it. Brenna felt bullied about being asked to take down the review she left, so she quit GoodReads.
Brenna claims that Goodreads is not safe for women and that they are constantly being bullied “When I say the bookternet is not safe for women, I mean it. Thankfully I have never been physically attacked or directly harmed by my experiences tweeting and blogging about books. But I have certainly been made to feel unsafe, to live on the defensive, to question the motivations of those who engage with me, to block first and ask questions never. That's not the person I want to be, but it's the person I must be if I wish to have a public voice on a big platform like Book Riot. If I have to choose between my sweetness and my voice, my voice will always, always win. It has to.”
Her post on Book Riot has garnered a few hundred comments and moderator Kelly Jensen has been deleting almost every single comment written by men and people who disagree with the author. Kelly is even claiming that GoodReads is sexist because the site does not do enough to protect women from indie authors shilling their books or authors who have a problem with a bad review.
Kelly said “Sexism works when a group in power uses that power against another group. In other words, women can’t be sexist against men. Men have power in our society; women do not.” So, is Kelly saying that women have no power online and in the world at large? Many people have called her out on this issue and she has personally deleted everything that conflicts with her narrow world view.
Only four men have their comments officially sanctioned and even women have raised the issue about Book Riot promoting the fact that Brenna is playing the victim on one hand and over-zealously battling commentators on the other. Book Riot is claiming that fundamentally it is men responsible for driving women away from GoodReads and book blogs in general.
One gender group is not to blame as Book Riot is claiming. Women can also be hostile when people leave negative reviews of their books or call them out for being shills on Twitter. Author Kimber Leigh Wheaton said “My book-related stalkers and harassers have all been women so far. I had a trio make my life a living hell last year. It was so bad I thought about giving up writing. I mean, what’s the point when my stress level was through the roof. But of course, that would let them win. As a reviewer, I get a few nasty comments off and on, but again most (almost all really) were from women. I actually get stalked and harassed more as an author than a reviewer. The internet is full of people typing before thinking. It’s so easy to spout off without serious repercussions. It’s like the frontal lobe ceases to function in some people the moment they log on.”
Book blogger Celine said “I’m so sorry to hear you got harassed – no one should go through that. However, I’m not sure I agree that it’s gendered harassment, and that the female voice isn’t valued in the online book community. I’ve never noticed any sexual bias in the community, apart from the wider cultural denigration of “women’s fiction”. In the four years I’ve been active on the Goodreads forums and as reviewer, I’ve never been called out on my gender, nor have I had to block anyone. It could be I’ve just been lucky. But I don’t recognize your generalizing statements in my personal experience.” The Book Riot moderator team mocked her for this opinion.
Finally, Carol McNicol summed it up by saying “‘I’m a woman and personally I think this is just a big over reaction. Honest to God, we are becoming a nanny community where every little thing is an anti woman slur. I feel absolute no hesitance in sharing my opinions where and when I feel I have something to contribute. And if people (or men) feel the need to personally attack me, then that says more about them and less about me. Just ignore it and stop living your life in fear of what other people think and say. Let’s try raising a new generation of girls who aren’t afraid to speak out and defend themselves rather than running away when confronted with a little bit of resistance.”
Running away at the first sign of conflict is the essence of Brenna Clarke Gray’s rambling diatribe. She is claiming that when authors ask a reviewer why they left a review or to ask them to remove it as a sign of bullying and sexism and the Book Riot staff are in agreement.
|A few days ago I posted about how a Ukrainian tech site recently tested the PocketBook Aqua ebook reader to see if it could withstand being frozen in a block of ice. The device showed no ill effects whatsoever after being thawed out, and it turns out the same can be said for the IP67-certified […]|
The The Metropolitan Museum of Art is one of the most famous galleries in North America and visiting it in New York is considered a rite of passage. Traveling there is expensive and buying the physical books on Amazon will cost $118. In order to make their paintings and drawings more accessible the Met is focusing on digital and is now giving away a ton of digital content for free.
Met has been focusing on digital since 2010 and had humble beginnings with only a few hundred paintings in the digital format and expanded into eBooks in 2012. Today, there is 422 art catalogs, eBooks and 400,000 free art images. All of the books are in the PDF format or are available online via a digital reader.
If you are into art on a personal level or an art history major you will want to take a gander at the MetPublications' current collection. I would recommend African Ivories, Chess: East and West, Past and Present; Modern Design in The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1890–1990; Vincent Van Gogh: The Drawings; French Art Deco; or even a guide to the museum itself
The Metropolitan Museum of Art is Focusing on eBooks is a post from: Good e-Reader
Saturday, March 28, 2015
20% of all Canadians live in rural areas without a major bookstore and an electronics shop. Chapters/Indigo have been closing down locations and with Future Shop axing 65 locations, it will be difficult for Canadians to buy an e-reader on a retail level.
This is a blow to smaller companies that depended on Future Shop for distribution such as Aluratek and the Boogieboard writing tablet. Likely Kobo will also see diminished revenue because of this situation but Amazon is unaffected, because they sell their e-readers online.
Friday, March 27, 2015
Digital comics and manga are notorious for printing weekly issues for years. This is a massive barrier to new readers who want to start at the very beginning. Amazon is seeking to make peoples lives a bit easier with a new experimental program that bundles 25 issues into a single purchase.
Amazon Japan has just launched the Kindle Buying Corner that bundles popular manga series such as Attack on Titan, Magi and Yowamushi Pedal. This is beneficial for readers because they only have to make a single purchase, instead of selecting each one individually. If a reader already owns a few issues in the bundle, the cost is dedicated from the overall cost.
The Kindle Buying Corner makes sense to debut in Japan because Amazon has been heavily focusing on getting publishers to include them in their digital distribution pipeline and make their manga solution very competitive with the local market.
It is expected that Amazon will likely debut the service in the US at some point in 2015. Industry experts are forecasting that Amazon will leverage the vast digital comic library from Comixology, which they purchased last year. The North American audience is obsessed with comics due to the massive success of the Marvel and DC franchises and new readers might find buying them in bulk very compelling.
Amazon is trying to compete with Dropbox, Google and Microsoft with it’s Unlimited Cloud Drive option. The new service goes beyond simple a simple photo storage solution and can now handle video, music and e-books.
Amazon has nixed the free option with photo storage and now demands that their users subscribe to Prime in order to keep on using the service. You can store unlimited photos and up to 5 GB of everyday files. If you are not a Prime member, it costs $11.99 per year. The Unlimited Everything plan basically has no limits on storage and is $59.99 per year.
Not everyone is excited about this new product offering. Serious video editors and film makers lament that Amazon only has a 2 GB file upload limit, which prevents them from storing their media properly. The only way to bypass this restriction is if you use the Desktop software, instead of the mobile apps. Other users have lamented that the Send to Kindle function for popular browser extensions no longer work unless you are a paid subscriber. This is especially troubling because Amazon used the free Send to Kindle function as a marketing ploy to get users to switch to their ecosystem.
In the end, this move is to pick up users that want to store media and aren’t investing into other cloud storage platforms. Amazon is certainly not the first company to offer "unlimited" storage, but it looks like it's the first to market this as a service to anyone who wants it. Dropbox, for example, offers unlimited storage as part of Dropbox for Business, Google focuses on enterprise and small businesses. Its closest competitor, Microsoft does offer a user service, but it requires a monthly subscription fee to Office 365.
I think Office 365 is still one of the better deals. $69.99/year but you’re also getting Office & Skype with your unlimited storage. You can also get access to the Outlook, Word, Excel and Powerpoint apps that have recently been developed for Android and iOS.
Scholastic has just released the exclusive cover image of the fully illustrated edition of J.K. Rowling's bestselling Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone. It will be available to purchase in major bookstores October 6th 2015.
The illustrated version of the first Harry Potter book will not be the last, Scholastic plans to publish fully illustrated editions—one per year—of each of the seven titles. Over 450 million of the Harry Potter books have sold worldwide and the series continues to appear on bestseller lists in the U.S.
The new book cover features Harry Potter on Platform 9 ¾ surrounded by witches and wizards, trunks and owls, about to board the Hogwarts Express for the first time.
|Yesterday Amazon announced new pricing plans for their cloud storage service, and with it comes some bad news for Kindle owners and Kindle apps users. In a highly-questionable move, Amazon has removed the free 5GB tier. This means that Kindle users can no longer add personal documents to their Kindle accounts for free using email, […]|
|The Boyue T62 is one of the best options for an Android-powered E Ink ebook reader on the current market, and it recently got even better with the release of the Boyue T62+, a newer updated version. There appears to be only one main difference between the T62+ and the regular T62: the screen. The […]|
Haqiqah, or “The Truth,” launched recently through the efforts of website ImamsOnline, aims to educate younger generations of Muslims about the dangers of fanaticism that pervade religious sectors around the world. This effort is specifically focused on combating the extremely tech- and social media-savvy group ISIS, or Islamic State, as well as other similarly intentioned extremist groups.
In an interview with the BBC, Qari Asim, senior editor at imamsonline.com, said, “Someone has to reclaim that territory from ISIS, and that can only be imams: religious leaders who guide and nourish their community. But now that we live in a digital mobile world, some young people are not coming to the mosque so we must reach out to them – and this is the Muslims’ contribution to combat radicalisation on the net.”
This digital effort is the latest in a long-awaited realization from publishers and content creators that the old standbys are no longer effective. Current studies and survey reports have shown that millennials are simply not interacting with print periodicals in the way they once did; if there is no digital edition or online interaction, how are readers to be affected? This is an especially important question that the editors at Haqiqah have worked to address considering “more than 100,000 pieces of information, tweets, and Facebook posts coming out of Syria and Iraq every day,” and that the number of pro-Islamic State Twitter accounts is anticipated to be close to 70,000.
The editors of the digital magazine and the supporters of the ImamOnline website obviously hope this effort will be effective, and if comparable growth numbers for other publications that have made the leap to digital hold true in this case, it should be. The goal of not only spreading a more genuine message of Islam but also reaching out to younger believers through relevant social interaction is one that mobile connectivity can help foster.
In an interview with news site Independent.ie, Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said, “I, for one, cannot understand why I can watch my favourite Danish channels on my tablet in Copenhagen, a service I paid for, but I can't when I am in Brussels. And it's not only me who struggles with digital borders. About one European in five is interested in accessing content from other EU countries. Geo-blocking prevents consumers from accessing certain websites on the basis of their residence, or credit-card details. It is very difficult to explain this to the people and, at the same time, make the point that we are all residents of the EU and consumers in the same internal market."
While it might seem logical to blame internet service providers or the streaming companies themselves, a lot of the blame lies in how international rights are addressed for film, television, and video games, just to list a few. Just as in the world of publishing, the rights to books, movies, and other content are sold on a border-by-border basis. That’s one of those “this is how we’ve always done it” issues, and Vestager is tired of it.
Unfortunately, international rights are not only a tremendous source of revenue for rights holders, they’re also a rather large bargaining chip when it comes to negotiating with television stations, streaming services, and film venues. While this battle could go either way, it also opens the door for a reexamination of how books are sold throughout Europe and how VAT penalties such as those currently imposed in France and Luxembourg could be reconsidered. After all, if Vestager’s point is that the EU now functions as one semi-borderless retail space, there’s no reason for different costs in different regions.
“European consumers should be able to access goods, content, and other services no matter where they live and travel in Europe," said Ms Vestager. "It is high time we removed these digital barriers, which keep Europe's digital markets fragmented."
I do love a good demo. The folks at PubNub have been showing users of their software how home automation with a Raspberry Pi works – on a itty-bitty scale, with LEGO.
This little house is rigged up with seven embedded LEDs (representing things like the stove and the fireplace, as well as lights); sensors to measure humidity, barometric pressure, and temperature; and a stepper motor that remotely opens and closes the door. Scale the system up, and you could apply this ability to remotely control appliances in a full-size house.
Joe Hanson at PubNub says:
Home automation, of course, is something you can do without proprietary software (you’ll find plenty of examples on our blog); but we really like the slick user interface that PubNub offers; and…tiny LEGO houses. You can learn more over at PubNub’s own site. And I am reminded that I still haven’t got that PIR sensor for the hall light hooked up to a Pi.
The president of the UK Booksellers Association, Tim Walker spoke at the Nielsen BookInsights conference yesterday and made some startling revelations.
During a round-table discussion Tim said “I do a have a concern that Amazon’s dominance is causing problems. We estimate Kindle has a 95% market share of e-book sales in the UK and this is having a damaging effect… Consider the struggles of Barnes & Noble and the Nook platform, the problems of the established Txtr in Germany, and the decision here of Tesco to pull out of Blinkbox Books.”
Txtr recently was put into receivership and the company for all sense and purposes is done. The company originally burst onto the international scene in 2008 with plans to capitalize on the e-reader boom. Production and design issues led to their first device never being released. The company flipped gears in 2009 and started doing development for online digital publishers and traditional book sellers. In 2010 and 2011 they quickly became one of the largest companies outside North America developing whitelabel eBook ecosystems. The company's former portfolio includes clients such as Vol Retail and Weltbilde, who is the largest EU book retailer.
At the conference, Nielsen released data showing that online spending on books had overtaken in-store spending for the first time. E-books now account for 30% of book units purchased in the UK, and the sales of print and e-books together in 2014 stood at £2.2bn, up from 4% the previous year.
There is no denying that eBook sales in the UK are booming and Amazon is reaping the lions share of the profits. Tim Waters basically said that they are dominating the landscape and not having to put in millions of dollars into advertising, they are so big now, they simply don’t have to.
What does the future hold for the eBook market in the UK? Barnes and Noble has failed to erode market share from Amazon and homegrown starts are finding it hard to compete. Will Amazon be the only way we can buy books?
Thursday, March 26, 2015
The six inch e-reader market is heavily saturated and many serious readers are looking for a large screen alternative. The Sony Digital Paper 13.3 inch e-reader fits the bill, but was only designed to read PDF files and is quite expensive at $999. Onyx is in the process of making a consumer grade e-reader using a 13.3 inch screen and employing e-ink Mobius that will be released this October.
A source close to the situation has told Good e-Reader that “Onyx could have done a technologically sound big e-reader some time ago, but they are afraid the price would discourage the potential buyers. At the moment the Mobius screen costs around $600. The end product could cost 700-750 €/$. I don’t know why the company finally decided to run the risk, but Onyx now thinks there is a substantial market even at the higher price tag.”
e Ink Mobius is perfect for large screen displays because it was developed to weigh less than 50% of an equivalent glass based TFT and maintain flexibility. This is particularly important for mobile products. The standard 13.3 inch screen has a resolution of 1200×1600 pixels with 150 PPI, which is fairly solid to read digital content such as books, magazines, newspapers and technical documents.
The new Onyx 13.3 inch e-reader will likely be running Google Android 4.4 and this will allow users to install their own apps. This is particularly important because you can simply install the Kindle, Kobo or Nook app to buy and read e-books in a multitude of formats.
In 2014 Japan passed a new anti piracy law and had begun cracking down the whip on copyrighted materials and intellectual properties such as anime and manga from Japan. The Japanese government then commanded a lot of illegal streaming and hosting sites which has resulted in a lot of websites getting shut down.
With the help and cooperation of fifteen major anime production companies and manga publishers, the Japanese government started a huge extermination operation against 580, and counting, foreign sites which have illegally uploaded anime and manga contents on the web without the copyright holder’s permission. As Japan has began supporting the genre as one of their important cultural exports, there seems to be no end of illegal uploading of anime and manga via pirating sites, mainly operated by the Chinese. In the year 2013, the Cultural Affairs Agency estimated a loss at 560 billion yen ( around US $5.5 billion) in China alone.
Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry (METI) revealed it’s Manga-Anime Guardians project, which will monitor and remove illegally uploaded copies of anime and manga. The project aims to create an environment where fans can truly enjoy official creations, spur creations and continue to support and cultivate new talent. The METI states that online piracy hurts Japan at nearly $20 billion a year. Over half of US anime and manga fans read and watch pirated works, according to the METI.
The project is a part of the Manga-Anime Anti-Piracy Committee, which includes Aniplex, Kadokawa, Good Smile Company, Kodansha, Sunrise, Shueisha, Shogakukan, ShoPro, Studio Ghibli, Tezuka Productions, Toei Animation, TMS Entertainment, Bandai Namco Games, Pierrot, and Bushiroad.
It’s certainly an interesting topic, growing up all through out high school, I certainly didn’t have much of an income so streaming from websites or reading online scanlations was the only way for me to keep up to date with a lot of anime and manga, not to mention at the time, the Western audience was definitely suffering from lack of material. Let’s face it, for the almost 100+ anime that get released each season, there are only so many official sites that do grab these shows or manga. Nowadays it’s a little different, we have official sites that are more accessible, Crunchyroll and Funimation being the two main contenders, and more and more anime and manga have begun getting licensed. Which is fantastic, but even Crunchyroll will have restrictions on which countries can view what.
But all that aside, I do wholeheartedly believe we should be focusing our money on official merchandise and subscriptions to help the industry out. Can you imagine what kind of shows, licencing projects and possible earlier anime releases we would get if Japan wasn’t getting hit for $20 billion a year? It may seem like you are doing completely harmless by reading that latest released scanlation or downloading the newest episode of your favorite show, but please think of the developers, support the artist and it’s industry! And after all of this, what do you all think? As I noted earlier, I can see the pro’s and con’s for both but I know which direction I’ll be going towards from now on.
If you’d like to view the METI document which has a list of which sites have been taken down, you can view it here. The site is all in Japanese but you can find the list of websites in English on pages 11 and 12 for manga scanlation sites, pages 13-15 for video hosting sites (Youtube, Dailymotion etc.) and pages 16-18 for torrenting sites.
And those who’d like to support M.A.G, Manga – Anime Guardians, you can find them and their message here!
Anime and Manga: What Pirating Is Doing to the Industry is a post from: Good e-Reader
The February report looked at the combination of print and digital readers–both online and mobile device based–for US magazines, and found a 12.6% increase from February of last year to this year. The 2015 numbers showed a total audience of over 1.7 billion readers across the various pathways.
“Audience growth was driven largely by increases in the total video audience, which rose 18.7%, and magazines' mobile audience, which soared 78% compared to the year before.
“Mobile readers increased from 14% of the total audience to 22% over the same period. Their gross Web audience, including desktop and laptop, increased 6.9% over February 2014 — but in proportional terms, the Web audience actually shrank from 17% to 16%.”
This kind of growth, when coupled with the report earlier this week on the trends impacting different age demographics of newspaper readers, should serve as an illustration of where publishers and advertisers choose to focus. The earlier report pointed out that millennials are not consuming print newspapers in anywhere near the numbers the industry once saw, and that more than half of the 1000+ survey respondents didn’t pay for any type of news, digital or otherwise. Instead, both newspaper and magazine publishers need to take a hard look at the current behaviors of their target audiences, namely that this kind of reading is happening online or on mobile devices, and then plan accordingly.