Page 1





G G G G G An electronic book (variously: e-book, eBook, e-Book, ebook, digital book, or even e-edition) is a book-length publication in digital form, consisting of text, images, or both, readable on computers or other electronic devices.[1] Although sometimes defined as "an electronic version of a printed book",[2] many e-books exist without any printed equivalent. Commercially produced and sold e-books are usually intended to be read on dedicated e-book readers, however, almost any sophisticated electronic device that features a controllable viewing screen, including computers, many mobile phones, and all smartphones can also be used to read e-books. Contents [hide]


1 History


1.1 E-book formats


1.2 Libraries


1.3 Dedicated hardware readers and mobile reader software


1.4 Timeline

1.4.1 Until 1979

1.4.2 1980-1999

1.4.3 2000's

2 Formats

3 Comparison to printed books



3.1 Advantages

3.1.1 Spatial benefits

3.1.2 Mechanical and multimedia benefits

3.1.3 Distributive and access benefits

3.2 Digital rights management

4 Production

5 e-Readers

6 e-Reader applications

7 Market shares

8 See also

9 References

10 External links

History[edit] The inventor of the first e-book is not widely agreed upon. Some notable candidates include the following: The first e-book may be the Index Thomisticus, a heavily annotated electronic index to the works of Thomas Aquinas, prepared by Roberto Busa beginning in the late 1940s. However, this is sometimes omitted, perhaps because the digitized text was (at least initially) a means to developing an index and concordance, rather than as a published edition in its own right.[3] Some years earlier the idea of the e-reader came to Bob Brown after watching his first "talkie" (movies with sound). In 1930, he wrote an entire book on this invention and titled it "The Readies" playing off the idea of the "talkie".[4] In his book, Brown says that movies have out maneuvered the book by creating the "talkies" and as a result reading should find a new medium: A machine that will allow us to keep up with the vast volume of print available today and be optically pleasing (this was a big point for Brown). Though Brown may have come up with the idea intellectually in the 1930s, early commercial e-readers did not follow his model. Nevertheless, Brown in many ways predicted what e-readers would become and what they would mean to the medium of reading. In an article Jennifer Schuessler writes, "The machine,

Brown argued, would allow readers to adjust the type size, avoid paper cuts and save trees, all while hastening the day when words could be 'recorded directly on the palpitating ether.'"[5] However, Brown would likely have found our e-readers today to be much too bookish and not unique enough in their own right.[original research?] He felt that the e-reader should bring a completely new life to the medium of reading. Schuessler relates it to a DJ spinning bits of old songs to create a beat or an entirely new song as opposed to just a remix of a familiar song.[5]

テ]gela Ruiz Robles with la Enciclopedia Mecテ。nica, or the Mechanical Encyclopedia.

In 1949 a teacher from Galicia, Spain - Angela Ruiz - patents the first electronic book. Her intention was to decrease the number of books that her pupils carried to the school. Alternatively, some historians consider electronic books to have started in the early 1960s, with the NLS project headed by Doug Engelbart at Stanford Research Institute (SRI), and the Hypertext Editing System and FRESS projects headed by Andries van Dam at Brown University.[6][7][8] Augment ran on specialized hardware, while FRESS ran on IBM mainframes. FRESS documents were structureoriented rather than line-oriented, and were formatted dynamically for different users, display hardware, window sizes, and so on, as well as having automated tables of contents, indexes, and so on. All these systems also provided extensive hyperlinking, graphics, and other capabilities. Van Dam is generally thought to have coined the term "electronic book",[9][10] and it was established enough to use in an article title by 1985.[11] FRESS was used for reading extensive primary texts online, as well as for annotation and online discussions in several courses, including English Poetry and Biochemistry. Brown faculty made extensive use of FRESS; for example the philosopher Roderick Chisholm used it to produce several of his books. Thus in the Preface to Person and Object (1979) he writes "The book would not have been completed without the epoch-making File Retrieval and Editing System ..."[12]

Brown University's leadership in electronic book systems continued for many years, including navyfunded projects for electronic repair-manuals;[13] a large-scale distributed hypermedia system known as InterMedia;[14] a spinoff company Electronic Book Technologies that built DynaText, the first SGML-based book-reader system; and the Scholarly Technology Group's extensive work on the still-prevalentOpen eBook standard.

Michael Hart (left) and Gregory Newby (right) of Project Gutenberg, 2006

Despite the extensive earlier history, several publications report Michael S. Hart as the inventor of the ebook.[15][16][17] In 1971 the operators of the Xerox Sigma V mainframe at the University of Illinoisgave Hart extensive computer-time. Seeking a worthy use of this resource, he created his first electronic document by typing the United States Declaration of Independence into a computer. Project Gutenberg was launched afterwards to create electronic copies of more texts - especially books.[18] One early e-book implementation was the desktop prototype for a proposed notebook computer, the Dynabook, in the 1970s at PARC: a general-purpose portable personal computer capable of displaying books for reading.[19] In 1992, Sony launched the Data Discman, an electronic book reader that could read e-books that were stored on CDs. One of the electronic publications that could be played on the Data Discman was called The Library of the Future.[20] Early e-books were generally written for specialty areas and a limited audience, meant to be read only by small and devoted interest groups. The scope of the subject matter of these e-books included technical manuals for hardware, manufacturing techniques and other subjects.[citation needed] In the 1990s, the general availability of the Internet made transferring electronic files much easier, including e-books.

E-book formats[edit] See also: comparison of e-book formats

Reading an ebook on public transit

As e-book formats emerged and proliferated, some garnered support from major software companies such as Adobe with its PDF format, and others supported by independent and open-source programmers. Different readers followed different formats, most of them specializing in only one format, and thereby fragmenting the e-book market even more. Due to exclusiveness and limited readerships of e-books, the fractured market of independent publishers and specialty authors lacked consensus regarding a standard for packaging and selling e-books. However, in the late 1990s a consortium formed to develop the Open eBook format as a way for authors and publishers to provide a single source-document which many book-reading software and hardware platforms could handle. Open eBook defined required subsets of XHTML and CSS; a set of multimedia formats (others could be used, but there must also be a fallback in one of the required formats); and an XML schema for a "manifest", to list the components of a given e-book, identify a table of contents, cover art, and so on. Google Books has converted many public-domain works to this open format. In 2010 e-books continued to gain in their own underground markets.[citation needed] Many e-book publishers began distributing books that were in the public domain.[citation needed] At the same time, authors with books that were not accepted by publishers offered their works online so they could be seen by others. Unofficial (and occasionally unauthorized) catalogs of books became available on the web, and sites devoted to e-books began disseminating information about e-books to the public.[21]

Libraries[edit] It has been suggested that this article be merged into E-book lending. (Discuss) Proposed since December 2012. US Libraries began providing free e-books to the public in 1998 through their web sites and associated services,[22] although the e-books were primarily scholarly, technical or professional in nature, and could not be downloaded. In 2003, libraries began offering free downloadable popular fiction and non-fiction ebooks to the public, launching an e-book lending model that worked much more successfully for public libraries.[23] The number of library e-book distributors and lending models continued to increase over the next few years. From 2005 to 2008 libraries experienced 60% growth in e-book collections.[24] In 2010, a

Public Library Funding and Technology Access Study[25] found that 66% of public libraries in the US were offering e-books,[26] and a large movement in the library industry began seriously examining the issues related to lending e-books, acknowledging a tipping point of broad e-book usage.[27] However, some publishers and authors have not endorsed the concept of electronic publishing, citing issues with demand, piracy and proprietary devices.[28] Demand-driven acquisition (DDA) has been around for a few years in public libraries, which allows vendors to streamline the acquisition process by offering to match a library's selection profile to the vendor's e-book titles.[29] The library's catalog is then populated with records for all the e-books that match the profile.[29] The decision to purchase the title is left to the patrons, although the library can set purchasing conditions such as a maximum price and purchasing caps so that the dedicated funds are spent according to the library's budget.[29] The 2012 meeting of the Association of American University Presses included a panel on patron-drive acquisition (PDA) of books produced by university presses based on a preliminary report by Joseph Esposito, a digital publishing consultant who has studied the implications of PDA with a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.[30]

Dedicated hardware readers and mobile reader software[edit] There have been several generations of dedicated hardware e-book readers. The Rocket eBook[31] and several others were introduced around 1998, but did not gain widespread acceptance. The establishment of the E Ink Corporation in 1997 led to the development of electronic paper, a technology which allows a display screen to reflect light like ordinary paper without the need for a backlight; electronic paper was incorporated first into the Sony Librie (released in 2004) and Sony Reader(2006), followed by the Amazon Kindle, a device which, upon its release in 2007, sold out within five hours. As of 2009, new marketing models for e-books were being developed and a new generation of reading hardware was produced. E-books (as opposed to e-book readers) have yet to achieve global distribution. In the United States, as of September 2009, the Amazon Kindle model and Sony's PRS-500 were the dominant e-reading devices.[32] By March 2010, some reported that the Barnes & Noble Nook may be selling more units than the Kindle in the US.[33] On January 27, 2010 Apple Inc. launched a multi-function device called the iPad[34] and announced agreements with five of the six largest publishers[citation needed] that would allow Apple to distribute ebooks.[35] The iPad includes a built-in app for e-books called iBooks and the iBookstore. The iPad, the first commercially-profitable tablet computer, was followed in 2011 by the release of the first Android-based tablets as well as LCD versions of the Nook and Kindle; unlike previous dedicated e-readers, tablet computers are multi-function, utilize LCD displays (and usually touchscreens), and (like iOS and Android) be more agnostic to e-book vendor applications, allowing for installation of other e-book vendors. The growth in general-purpose tablet computer use allowed for further growth in popularity of e-books in the 2010s. In July 2010, online bookseller reported sales of e-books for its proprietary Kindle outnumbered sales of hardcover books for the first time ever during the second quarter of 2010, saying it sold 140 e-books for every 100 hardcover books, including hardcovers for which there was no digital edition.[36] By January 2011, e-book sales at Amazon had surpassed its paperback sales.[37] In the overall US market, paperback book sales are still much larger than either hardcover or e-book; the American Publishing Association estimated e-books represented 8.5% of sales as of mid-2010, up from 3% a year before.[38] At the end of the first quarter of 2012, e-book sales in the United States surpassed hardcover book sales for the first time.[39]

In Canada, The Sentimentalists won the prestigious national Giller Prize. Owing to the small scale of the novel's independent publisher, the book was initially not widely available in printed form, but the e-book edition became the top-selling title forKobo devices in 2010.[40] Use of an e-book reader is disallowed on commercial airliners during takeoff and landing.[41] A comparison of available e-book readers can be found at comparison of e-book readers.

Full document