Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Pocketbook Touch Lux 3 Available Soon


Pocketbook has a new e-reader that they will be officially releasing in the next few weeks. It is called the Pocketbook Touch Lux 3 and the key selling point is that it employs e-ink Carta. This is the same e-paper technology that makes the Kindle Voyage so great.

A German e-commerce website accidentallyy put the new Touch Lux 3 as a product before Pocketbook could officially make an announcement.This is actually a fairly regular occurrence in the e-reader industry and recently occurred with the Kobo Glo HD.

The Touch Lux 3 has a six inch e-ink Carta display with a resolution of 1024×758 pixels. This model will likely be ideal for people who intend on bypassing the Kindle Voyage or Kobo Glo HD.

Underneath the hood is a 1GHZ processor, 256 MB of RAM, 4 GB of internal storage and a Micro SD to increase memory up to 32 GB.

Pocketbook is a brand that is fairly popular in Eastern Europe and to a lesser extent Western Europe. They are hardly a household name in North America but people dig the brand. Chiefly because its agnostic and does not lock you into any one specific ecosystem. Instead they support one of the largest array of e-book formats in the business. PDF, PDF (DRM), EPUB, EPUB(DRM), DJVU, FB2, FB2.ZIP,DOC, DOCX, RTF, PRC, TCR, TXT, CHM, HTM, HTML, MOBI, and ACSM.

2014 was a year of risks for Pocketbook as they broke conventions to see if it would lead to an influx of sales. It partnered with a French boutique firm to design the Sense e-reader, that so far has only been available in Russia. It had the eight inch InkPad e-reader and the first e-reader with a camera, the Ultra. I think the Lux 3 is Pocketbook playing it safe and slightly improving this model from past generations.

Pocketbook Touch Lux 3 Available Soon is a post from: Good e-Reader

Podcast: New HarperCollins Deal with Amazon and Kobo Glo HD


Welcome back to another exciting edition of the Good e-Reader Radio Show! Today we talk about the new publishing contract that Amazon and HarperCollins have signed. What does it mean for readers and will e-book prices dramatically increase? Also on the show Michael talks about the new Kobo Glo HD e-reader, how this fits into Kobo’s product portfolio going forward and will future models have an SD Card?

Podcast: New HarperCollins Deal with Amazon and Kobo Glo HD is a post from: Good e-Reader

Onyx Boox M96 Buyer’s Guide

One question that comes up a lot around here is where to get an Onyx Boox M96, which version is best and what seller to buy it from. So I wanted to put together this article explaining the different places that sell the M96 and what the differences are between brandings. Not all M96’s are […]

Launching Picademy@Google Leeds

We love introducing educators to the Raspberry Pi; that’s why the education team are always on the road, at conferences, shows and events, sharing the Pi’s learning potential. Last year, we started a teacher training programme, and invited educators from all over the world to our headquarters for some fun hands-on learning. We called it Picademy. It’s been hugely popular, and so far we’ve trained around 200 teachers through seven events in our own unique way. The feedback has blown us away. Of those who completed our feedback questionnaire:

  • 97.5% stated that they were now likely or very likely to use Raspberry Pi in their classroom, and 
  • 98.8% stated that they were likely or very likely to share the training received with other teachers.

So we have a problem. We want to train thousands of educators – no – hundreds of thousands of educators, and that’s not possible for our tiny education team, even though it’s made up of a cracking bunch of superstars. Picademy is always oversubscribed.

We have huge ambitions for education. Thanks to the generosity and support of Google, we think we are heading in the right direction. Today we are excited to announce our new Picademy@Google programme for educators, kicking off in Leeds, UK. This is another opportunity for primary, secondary and post-16 teachers to attend Raspberry Pi-flavoured computing and science training, but this time at a Google Digital Garage near where you live. The Digital Garages are a group of pop-up spaces – this first one located in Leeds Docks – which will help 200,000 British businesses learn crucial skills for the digital age, and use the power of the internet to reach more customers and grow faster.

Here is trustee Pete Lomas with Lauren Hyams (Code Club Pro) and Roger Davies (Computing at School) who will also be offering teacher training opportunities at the Digital Garage

Here is Raspberry Pi Foundation trustee Pete Lomas with representatives from Code Club Pro and Computing at School (who will also be offering teacher training opportunities at the Digital Garage) at the launch event in March.

The Picademy@Google courses will be run by hand-picked community members and educators, and will be a a mix of hands-on making, project-based learning and general hacking (think Picademy meets Raspberry Jam!) They will run alongside our definitive Picademy course and are, as always, completely free to attend for teachers.

We will be launching Picademy@Google in other UK cities as Google Digital Garages open over the next few months – to be informed about when one opens up near you, please sign up to our education newsletter.

The Leeds Digital Garage will be open between now and November, and we’ll be running a number of Picademy@Google courses there, so start spreading the news: sign-ups for teachers are open!


eHighlights Adult Edition- April & May

The arrival of a new month brings another great edition of our Adult eHighlights catalog.

April and May are both amazing months for new books so I'm sure you'll love browsing through all the great new titles. My personal favorites this month include Oliver Sacks' extraordinary memoir On the Move, Toni Morrison's gripping new novel God Help the Child, and Clifford Jackman's fierce and thrilling western noir novel The Winter Family. Jon Cryer's memoir, So That Happened, had me cracking up at my desk as I listened to the audiobook. All of these great new titles (and many more) had me wishing there were more hours in the day!

Titles can be viewed in the catalog or directly in marketplace carts. Happy reading!


HarperCollins, Amazon Reach Agreement

In an announcement that is certain to bring a sigh of relief to authors and readers, HarperCollins announced yesterday that it has reached a multi-year agreement with Amazon over its recent pricing dispute. While HarperCollins, like several other publishers before it, has been gunning for an agency pricing model in which the publisher sets the price of its books and basically forbids discounting on the part of the retailer, Amazon has long dug its heels in and refused to budge with the publishers in terms of its demand for a wholesale model. Under that pricing model, Amazon would pay publishers an agreed upon price for their titles and then could sell them for whatever it wants to, including at a loss.

On the surface, the wholesale model would seem to be the best form of pricing, at least as far as consumers are concerned, and certainly where publishers and authors are concerned. The publisher makes its agreed upon royalty–which it goes on to divide with the author according to their contract–and the consumer stands to benefit from an all-out price war among the retailers. The retailer gets to entice customers with the best deal possible, while using their interest in one product (the book) to encourage the sale of other items. It sounds like the American dream, capitalism at its finest.

But a recent interview with Smashwords’ CEO Mark Coker helped explain why that might be mutually beneficial in the immediate sense, but over time will lead to a break down of the entire publishing industry. A look at the history of corporations in the US shows a pattern of prosperity and decline, a system in which major companies go through stagnant years and are forced to reinvent themselves in order to climb back up to the top. The wholesale model means that one or two key players will have the power to sell books at a loss, driving out the smaller competition until there is no competition. Whether or not that’s the intended outcome when major players get to control the purse strings is irrelevant; once the competition is gone, where do readers turn for books when the major players also shutter their doors?

It comes as no surprise that HarperCollins and Amazon have reached an agreement, as the clock is ticking on one of the most important literary milestones of the century: the release of the long-awaited sequel to one of the most widely read books in modern history. If HarperCollins wants to sell Harper Lee’s Go Set a Watchman and Amazon wants to benefit from that sale, a meeting in the middle had to take place. But as of this writing, Amazon is offering the book for pre-order–something that many mom-and-pop independent bookstores aren’t even set up to do–for less than $13 for the hardcover; the Kindle edition is priced just over $11, while Barnes and Noble and Kobo are offering the ebook edition for pre-order for more than $16. While those are the major players in the online bookselling and ebook selling space, how many independent bookstores or online startups will be able to even come close to those prices?

While the terms of the deal haven’t been disclosed, it is a multi-year agreement in which HarperCollins will set the prices of its ebooks but allow Amazon to offer incentives to its customers. The most important statement made on the agreement comes from the publisher, who stated that its books will continue to be available from Amazon, a fate that was called into question if an agreement couldn’t be reached.

HarperCollins, Amazon Reach Agreement is a post from: Good e-Reader

Reviewing God Help the Child by Toni Morrison

Nobel laureate Toni Morrison know how to tug at people's heart-stings. Her work is notoriously fierce, poignant, and emotional and God Help the Child has claimed its place among her canon of extraordinary novels. In less than 200 pages, Morrison {ABEDB06D-AEBF-4E04-A7B0-8517662F8186}Img400shares a moving story about how childhood trauma influences and defragments adulthood. Her brevity sets a somber and emotional tone and the narrative stayed with me long after the novel concluded.

The center of God Help the Child is a love story between a young African-American woman named Bride and a young African-American man named Booker. Both are suffering from a lingering anguish over their equally disturbing and terrible pasts. Bride was born to a mother who detested her due to her dark skin color and was abused deeply, physically and emotionally. Booker's brother was brutally murdered by the hands of a serial child molester. Their collective scars have prevented them from thriving in adulthood and their stunted maturity causes difficulty both personally and professionally. As their lives weave and unweave together, Morrison paints a tragically beautiful picture of torment and redemption.

As with many of her previous novels, prepare to be shocked and uncomfortable at times throughout the story but her account is equally gripping and socially important. God Help the Child is a perfect book for anyone who wants to be challenged and entertained at the same time. I suggest you free up an afternoon so you can read entirely in one sitting.

Thank you, Toni Morrison. Your heartfelt novels are truly a gift.

This title will be available to borrow from your library on April 21st but you can place a hold right now!

Titles may have limited regional or platform availability. Check OverDrive Marketplace to find what is available for you.


Rachel Kray is a Collection Development Analyst with OverDrive