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Posts tagged Joanna

Review: Age of the Infovore, by Tyler Cowen
July 20, 2012 | 9:02 am

41b69W cAeL BO2 204 203 200 PIsitb sticker arrow click TopRight 35 76 AA278 PIkin4 BottomRight 64 22 AA300 SH20 OU01 I just finished reading a fascinating book called Age of the Infovore by Tyler Cowen. It's somewhat misleadingly subtitled 'succeeding in the information economy' and has a picture of a USB cable on the front; this led me to believe it was about how to use the internet and modern technology for their nobler purposes rather than just for watching videos of cats on YouTube. Only one chapter was directly was about this, and that chapter was the strongest takeaway from the book.Cowen writes primarily about the way autistic people order their brains, their worlds and their activities. He views...

How reader technology has made me a smarter reader and learner
July 4, 2012 | 11:33 pm

Photo I read a few articles recently on how ebooks affect learning. On the con side, these articles pointed out that textbooks are often less available in ebook (true), that the e-versions which do exist are clunky and limited (true) and that for some types of learning, people really do absorb information better off paper than off screens (debatable). I had one bad experience myself with a formal e-textbook required for an official course, and I agree with some of the points these commentators made. But on the pro side, reader technology has made my non-formal, personal reading smarter, easier and...

My worst ebook year ever: an update on spending from the ebook trenches
June 3, 2012 | 8:09 pm

Images I have written before about how this has been a bad ebook year for me---the books seem less interesting, the quality seems lower, the prices higher and the selection worse. I'm reading what I have already, and finding myself driven back to the classics, the indie stuff and other options off the beaten publishing path. I ran some numbers today and found that, as I expected it would, my dissatisfaction is being reflected in my ebook spending. This has been, by far, my cheapest book year yet! I have been keeping stats on my ebook spending since I bought my first-ever...

From the trenches: are publishers’ library policies affecting book choices?
April 4, 2012 | 9:25 am

Images First, one publisher set a cap on how many times their ebooks could be loaned out. Then another one pulled their stuff from library purchase altogether. So, what has that meant for the average library patron? What are the library buyers getting in lieu of books which once might be available to them but now are not? I have access to three public library systems right now and consider myself a regular user, so I have been keeping track of some trends over the last few weeks. And what have I found? 1) I am seeing much more series stuff than...

Is Amazon evil, or are they just really good at business?
February 15, 2012 | 12:19 pm

Images Nico Vreeland's earlier post, which Teleread reprinted earlier, was one of many articles I have lately seen which explore the issue of the publishers versus Amazon. Is Amazon evil? Are their business practices 'predatory' and should publishers be trying to disable them? More and more, I am thinking the answer to these questions is no. Amazon is not evil. They have just figured out what the customers want better than anybody else has so far, and they are giving it to them. Vreeland points out, correctly, that customers don't buy 'Random House books' or 'Penguin Books.' They buy Stephen King...

An ebook rental option: the solution to OverDrive’s library woes?
February 13, 2012 | 7:15 am

Images So, Penguin has now dropped out of the Overdrive library service. Yikes! It strikes me that all of these 'legacy' publishers who are panicking because Amazon or Apple or Google or Indie Everyman are going to crush them to bits are taking an entirely wrong approach here. What if, instead of clinging to the way things were done before, they actually innovated? What if, instead of locking things down ever further and driving people away from their goods, they opened things up and brought them in? I think an ebook rental service, run in conjunction with the existing Overdrive architecture, would...

A tribute to indie author L.C. Evans
January 24, 2012 | 4:01 pm

Cropped headerforlinda2 To celebrate and honor our friend, indie author, L.C. Evans, and her contribution to the Indie eBook revolution, we’re giving away a whole bunch of free books. Linda lost her fight with cancer earlier this month. We lost a friend and a compatriot. We’d like you to buy her books, read her books, and make her words live. In Linda’s own words, from her indieview a year ago… “ I want my books to appeal to everyone, though I understand that men in general aren’t fond of reading chick lit or romantic comedy.” If chick lit or romantic comedy is not your thing, authors who have been...

Make your own ebook: some unconventional book replacement ideas for your tablet
January 18, 2012 | 8:47 am

Photo 1 When people think about ebooks, they think about mostly text-based reading of straight, narrative work. But here are some off-the-beaten-track book replacements you can make yourself that save time and money and provide an enhanced experience. 1) Art books. Delphi Classics, a favourite vendor of mine who sells DRM-free bundles of 'complete works' by authors in the public domain, has an inspired new series focused on masters of art. The first book, at a budget-friendly $2.50, features the complete works of Leonardo Da Vinci, with bonus biographical content and other goodies. The iPad is a perfect medium for this type of...

Can publishers and customers meet on ebook pricing?
December 20, 2011 | 8:46 am

Images  1 Some interesting threads on here these last few days about the price of content. Are publishers gouging customers with prices that are unfairly high? Are customers bringing about the ruination of the media industry by demanding prices that are too low? Is there a halfway point at which these two conflicting groups can meet? I think there is. I would like to introduce the concept of pricing relativity. That is, a price should be considered not so much as an entity unto itself, but an entity in relation to what other choices a customer who may be in the target market...

Quality is the new gatekeeper: how ebooks have changed my reading
November 30, 2011 | 1:00 am

Images I was thinking today about how ebooks have changed my reading habits in the last few years. I had flirted with them as early as 2005, when I experimented with Project Gutenberg freebies on a Palm Pilot while living in smalltown New Zealand. There was only one local bookstore, and its selection was lacking. At the time, Project Gutenberg was a revelation. In the years since, I have gone through 5 main readers and nearly as many preferred bookstores, and spent over $500 a year on books and content. So, how has my reading changed? There are some special points I'll...

Close, but not yet perfect: my review of the Kindle 4
November 14, 2011 | 9:02 am

Index I have been a Kindle user for its last three incarnations: I bought a K2 to replace my Sony reader because I wanted to use the text to speech feature and I wanted support for multilingual dictionaries, then when my visiting aunt expressed interest, I sold it to her bought the K3. I was happy with it, and when the K4 came out, I was only mildly tempted---until this same dear aunt visited again and told the sordid tale of a husband who stole the K3 out from under her, registered it to his own account and left her reader-less...

Kindle thieving, and other adventures in converting family to the joys of ereading
November 3, 2011 | 8:51 am

Images So, until this weekend, my tally of relatives converted over to e-reading was as follows: Dad, gifted a Kobo and happily downloading his obscure boyhood favourites off Manybooks.net; Mom with a Kobo still registered to my account, and to which I do all the book loading; Stepmom, also with a gifted Kobo, happily downloading public library books; and an aunt who had bought my old Kindle off of me when I upgraded during one of her visits. So far, so good, right?Well, it turns out that last one hasn't quite gone as planned. The aunt was in town for a...