Thursday, June 03, 2010

#IEL2010 Thursday Afternoon Keynote

Bridging the Digital Divide
Presenter: Steve Haber, President Sony's Digital Reading Business Division

Digital reading has a lot in common with consumer electronics
- Lot in common with the LP / CD / MP3 evolution
- Lot in common with film / digital imaging

In all cases - this paradigm shift did not slow down the content or experience.
- Caused an EXPLOSION.
- More enthusiasts (LP to CD - get rid of skips, higher quality)
- The new technology solved problems, made things easier to do things (in many cases)

Publishing hasn't had a paradigm shift in generations
- But there is an opportunity to have reading explode

Reading - a complex cognitive process of decoding symbols for the intention of deriving meaning
- Some read to connect / escape / learn
- Develop intellectually / emotionally.
- Self-improvement

Different cultures (generalities)
- Try to research the reading habits of different cultures
- US: readers that read because we need to
+ Yes, some avid readers.
+ Less nostalgic about past authors.
- UK: reading important means of communication
+ Identify with their literary tradition
- Netherlands: For imagination and escape
- Germany: Poets, thinkers, vital to cultural life
- France: Reading expression of intellect
+ Very serious
+ Goal to acquire knowledge

Reading of how we connect to one another, ideas, across time and space.

What dictionaries you want?
- Why would you want a dictionary? We want translations!

2 years ago - 10 minutes why eBooks important
- Technology available
- People used to downloads and wireless
- Heard from avid readers - "Never go digital - I like the smell of books."
+ Heard the same thing about LPs to CD.
+ But mass market about ease and experience.

Launched eReader 6 years ago. Now at tipping point.
- 5mil+. Will top 12mil (how are they defining eReader? include iPad?)

Large market growth across cultures

Reading / Writing
- Simplistic drawings the precursor
- Not until the Guttenburg Press - now more widely available.

With advent of digital readers
- Device shipped, books not
- Wireless
- No returns....Publishers print, anything unsold by retailers taken back to publishers
- Better inventory management - right book at right time on demand

(Idea we can consider: Right content at right time on demand)

Digital - can now hyperlink words to dictionary, more information that before you would have to go grab another book....

Digital Revolution - critical component of exchange of ideas, broader and wider than ever

No one perfect education eReader device

Instant access to content.
Note-taking ability
Form / Technology so that it is easy to read for HOURS at a time.
+ Trying to match the experience of paper

Each organization / environment has own needs
- Easier to distribute white papers etc

(as I listen to Mr. Haber....I get the feeling that the iPad is more of a game-changer, with its multimedia capabilities, than he thinks.

Also thought his focus on courses and the "push" interesting)

eReaders help education with the learning process (as it currently stands)

Link to webcast

eReaders - better access to literature and information.

Digital Divide
- Those with access to computers vs. those who do not
- Access for those with access to digital content
- Also issues with Proprietary Format and Proprietary Digital Rights + some governments part of that divide

Call to action
- Purchasing process for eBooks must be simple
- Ownership needs to be permanent (no taking stuff back)
- File standards should be universal
- Devices should support public libraries

Access to public libraries worst kept secret
- Book checkout - expires on the reader
- Make sure you have access to public libraries (digital)
- Can do "queue" if a book becomes available

Defining and RE-Defining Access
- Paper books + digital advantages
- Different price points
- You should forget you have an eReader / electronic device in your hand
- You should be able to choose between wired / wireless
- Access to content
+ What is the best format? Work towards openness.

Lack of access to content
- limits what educators can do
- Limits access to information
- eReader becomes a toll both vs. a learning platform

- Wireless access via eReader = instant access
- Control of content available on reader
- Wired devices - increased security, less distraction

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