Frankfurt Book Fair Publisher Survey

The Frankfurt Book Fair has released a summary of the results of a recent survey of 840 international publishing company representatives.

Here's an excerpt from the press release:

As a general rule, digital products still only comprise a small fraction of sales: Around 60 per cent of those polled estimate that considerably less than ten per cent of their revenue will come from digital sources in 2009. However, this will change in the next two years in the opinion of those polled: 41 per cent of those polled calculate sales of up to ten per cent for 2011 and 58 per cent anticipate that digital products will comprise a considerably higher share of total sales. The percentage of those who assume that 26 to 100 per cent of their revenue will come from digital products in two years increased from 24 per cent (2009) to 38 per cent (2011).

The idea that digital content will generate more sales than the traditional book business is also gradually becoming more of a reality. Around 50 per cent of industry experts now see the year 2018 as the turning point: In a comparable survey taken one year ago, 40 per cent saw this date as a "changing of the guard." In 2008, 27 per cent were of the opinion that digital would never overtake print—today that number is only 22 per cent.

Library Systems Department Head at West Virginia University Libraries

The West Virginia University Libraries are recruiting a Library Systems Department Head.

Here's an excerpt from the ad:

The Head directs technology planning and customer service, and provides hands-on support for ExLibris/Voyager online catalog, library web services, digital collections, and an institutional repository. Supervises 5 staff. . . . The Systems Department maintains a library network with 600+ workstations, 120 laptops, 32 servers, a 5 terabyte storage area network, and a 5 terabyte preservation backup.

Mining a Million Scanned Books: Linguistic and Structure Analysis, Fast Expanded Search, and Improved OCR Grant Awarded

The NSF Division of Information & Intelligent Systems has awarded a grant to the Center for Intelligent Information Retrieval at UMass Amherst, the Perseus Digital Library Project at Tufts, and the Internet Archive for their "Mining a Million Scanned Books: Linguistic and Structure Analysis, Fast Expanded Search, and Improved OCR" proposal.

Here's an excerpt from the award abstract:

The Center for Intelligent Information Retrieval at UMass Amherst, the Perseus Digital Library Project at Tufts, and the Internet Archive are investigating large-scale information extraction and retrieval technologies for digitized book collections. To provide effective analysis and search for scholars and the general public, and to handle the diversity and scale of these collections, this project focuses on improvements in seven interlocking technologies: improved OCR accuracy through word spotting, creating probabilistic models using joint distributions of features, and building topic-specific language models across documents; structural metadata extraction, to mine headers, chapters, tables of contents, and indices; linguistic analysis and information extraction, to perform syntactic analysis and entity extraction on noisy OCR output; inferred document relational structure, to mine citations, quotations, translations, and paraphrases; latent topic modeling through time, to improve language modeling for OCR and retrieval, and to track the spread of ideas across periods and genres; query expansion for relevance models, to improve relevance in information retrieval by offline pre-processing of document comparisons; and interfaces for exploratory data analysis, to provide users of the document collection with efficient tools to update complex models of important entities, events, topics, and linguistic features. When applied across large corpora, these technologies reinforce each other: improved topic modeling enables more targeted language models for OCR; extracting structural metadata improves citation analysis; and entity extraction improves topic modeling and query expansion. The testbed for this project is the growing corpus of over one million open-access books from the Internet Archive.

CONTENTdm Image Viewer: dmMonocle 1.0 Released

The University of Nevada, Las Vegas Libraries have released dmMonocle 1.0.

Here's an excerpt from the project page:

dmMonocle is a stand-alone image viewer for CONTENTdm® collections, intended as a replacement for the default image viewer provided with CONTENTdm® 4.x and 5.x. The goal of the project is to make CONTENTdm® images, such as photos, maps, and scanned documents, easier to view and navigate. dmMonocle is written in JavaScript using jQuery, and provides patrons with the ability to zoom, pan, and rotate images on the fly without reloading the entire page. dmMonocle slices up large images into smaller square tiles, loading only the tiles in the visible area, much like Google Maps. In addition to the improved main viewing area, dmMonocle provides a thumbnail-sized navigator, showing patrons which part of the larger image they are viewing. The navigator may also be used to quickly move around an image

What to Withdraw: Print Collections Management in the Wake of Digitization

Ithaka has released What to Withdraw: Print Collections Management in the Wake of Digitization .

Here's an excerpt from the announcement:

Based on the expected continuing needs for print materials, this report considers the minimum time period for which access to the original will be required and assesses the number of print copies necessary to ensure that these goals are met. While complex, this methodology provides for a variety of risk profiles based on key characteristics, with preservation recommendations that similarly vary. For example, many materials that are adequately digitized and preserved in digital form, contain few images, and are held in certain quantities in system-wide print repositories may be safely withdrawn from local print holdings without impacting either preservation or access.

At the same time, the report warns that other print materials may not yet be ready for broad withdrawal without threatening both access and preservation goals. For these materials, a number of strategies are recommended to increase the flexibility available to libraries in the future.

Planned Obsolescence: Publishing, Technology, and the Future of the Academy

MediaCommons Press has launched and released its first publication, Planned Obsolescence: Publishing, Technology, and the Future of the Academy. MediaCommons gets support from the Institute for the Future of the Book and the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Here's an excerpt from the announcement:

This book-in-progress focuses on the social and institutional changes that will be required within colleges and universities in the U.S. in order for digital scholarly publishing to become a viable reality.

The manuscript is here published in full, in an commentable format designed to promote a new open mode of peer review.

"Worldwide Use and Impact of the NASA Astrophysics Data System Digital Library"

Michael J. Kurtz et al. have self-archived "Worldwide Use and Impact of the NASA Astrophysics Data System Digital Library" in

Here's the abstract:

By combining data from the text, citation, and reference databases with data from the ADS readership logs we have been able to create Second Order Bibliometric Operators, a customizable class of collaborative filters which permits substantially improved accuracy in literature queries. Using the ADS usage logs along with membership statistics from the International Astronomical Union and data on the population and gross domestic product (GDP) we develop an accurate model for world-wide basic research where the number of scientists in a country is proportional to the GDP of that country, and the amount of basic research done by a country is proportional to the number of scientists in that country times that country's per capita GDP.

We introduce the concept of utility time to measure the impact of the ADS/URANIA and the electronic astronomical library on astronomical research. We find that in 2002 it amounted to the equivalent of 736 FTE researchers, or $250 Million, or the astronomical research done in France. Subject headings: digital libraries; bibliometrics; sociology of science; information retrieval

The Google Books Settlement: Who Is Filing And What Are They Saying?

ACRL, ALA, and ARL have released The Google Books Settlement: Who Is Filing And What Are They Saying?.

Here's an excerpt:

The Association of Research Libraries, the American Library Association, and the Association of College and Research Libraries have prepared this document to summarize in a few pages of charts some key information about the hundreds of filings that have been submitted to the federal district court presiding over the Google Books litigation. The Google Books Settlement is the proposed settlement of a class action lawsuit brought against Google, Inc. by groups and individuals representing authors and publishers who objected to Google’s large-scale scanning of in-copyright books to facilitate its Book Search service. The Settlement would bind not only the groups who sued Google, but also most owners of copyrights in printed books ("class-members"), unless they choose to opt out of the Settlement. Class-members who opt out retain their right to sue Google over its scanning activities, but will not be part of the collective licensing scheme created by the Settlement. Under the Settlement, participating class-members will get a one-time payment in compensation for past scanning as well as a share of Google’s future revenues from its scanning activities. A new, non-profit entity called the Book Rights Registry will represent rightsholders under the Settlement going forward.

Institute of Museum and Library Services Announces Award of National Leadership Grants to 51 Institutions

The Institute of Museum and Library Services has announced the award of National Leadership Grants to 51 institutions.

Here's an excerpt from the press release:

The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), the primary source of federal funds for the nation's museums and libraries, announces the 51 institutions receiving National Leadership Grants (NLG) totaling $17,894,475. Projects by these institutions will advance the ability of museums and libraries to preserve culture, heritage, and knowledge while enhancing learning.

"Projects funded by IMLS's National Leadership Grants focus on education, health, computer literacy, and problem solving skills. We believe that museums and libraries play an important role in building a competitive workforce and engaged citizenry. We are equally confident that these institutions will elevate museum and library practice through this work," said Anne-Imelda Radice, IMLS Director.

NLG recipients will generate new tools, research, models, services, practices, and alliances that will positively impact the awarded institution and the nation.

Also see the list of grants by state.

Kenneth Crews on the U.S. Department of Justice Google Book Search Settlement Filing

In "Justice and Google Books: First Thoughts about the Government's Brief," Kenneth Crews, Director of the Copyright Advisory Office at Columbia University, discusses the U.S. Department of Justice Antitrust Division's filing on the Google Book Search Settlement.

Here's an excerpt:

The filing is remarkable for its lucid dissection of select issues. It is diplomatic, and it holds out repeated hope for the continued talks among the parties to the case. But clearly the DOJ does not like what it sees.

"Smithsonian Team Flickr: A Library, Archives, and Museums Collaboration in Web 2.0 Space"

Martin Kalfatovic et al. have self-archived "Smithsonian Team Flickr: A Library, Archives, and Museums Collaboration in Web 2.0 Space" in Smithsonian Research Online.

Here's an excerpt:

The Flickr Commons was created as a forum for institutions to share their rich photographic collections with the emerging Web 2.0 audience of Flickr. The Smithsonian Institution was the fourth member of the Commons. The Smithsonian effort was a direct collaborative effort of the libraries, archives, museums, and information technology staff that generated new pathways for collaboration between these units. As the world's largest museum complex, these Smithsonian units serve as a microcosm for collaboration in the information age. The Flickr Commons project provided insights into how the knowledge, skills, and abilities of libraries, archives, and museums (LAM) can converge in the Web 2.0 environment to provide collection access to new, and in some cases, unknown of audiences. Simultaneously, by putting "LAM" content into an environment that allows for direct interaction by these audiences, the knowledge of the content for holding institutions is enriched. By exposing Smithsonian content within the Flickr environment, the Institution is learning what content is desired by the Web 2.0 world, how to bring crowd-sourcing into professionally curated collections, and how to bring diverse institutional skills together in a collaborative project.

BioMed Central Launches Its 200th Open Access Journal

BioMed Central has launches its 200th open access journal, the Journal of Angiogenesis Research.

Here's an excerpt from the press release:

This major milestone reflects a growing trend as senior academics and learned societies turn to open access to publish their new journals or to improve the reach and visibility of their existing journals.

The success of any scientific journal, open access or subscription based, depends on it receiving a good number of high-quality papers in its area of interest. But for a subscription-based journal to succeed, it faces the additional hurdle of selling enough subscriptions to pay for its costs. In the current financial environment, libraries are increasingly having to trim their collections and are finding it virtually impossible to purchase new titles. This makes launching new subscription-based journals extremely challenging. Also, learned societies or scientific institutions who publish only a small number of titles are struggling to maintain their subscription numbers in competition with the larger publishers who sell collections of titles under the "big deal." In contrast, more and more institutions and funding bodies are making funds available for scientists to publish their papers in open access journals (see our recent blog posting on the Open Access Compact).

As a result of this situation, BioMed Central has recently seen an increasing number of institutions and societies choosing to take the open access route, either to launch new journals or increasingly to convert their existing journals to open access. Just this year, additions to our portfolio include Genetics, Selection and Evolution, owned and supported by INRA (the French National Institute for Agricultural Research), and Journal of Biomedical Science, which is supported by the National Science Council of Taiwan. These are established journals with impact factors and good rankings in their subject categories in the Journal Citation Report.  Also moving towards a re-launch with BioMed Central is Allergy, Asthma and Clinical Immunology, the official journal of the Canadian Society of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. In addition, several societies have launched new journals with us this year, including Sports Medicine, Arthroscopy, Rehabilitation, Therapy & Technology and Diabetology & Metabolic Syndrome.

Our experience with journals which have transferred to open access shows that they increase their submission levels and impact factors. For instance, the 50 year old Acta Veterinaria Scandanavica has doubled its submissions and nearly trebled its impact factor within three years of moving to BioMed Central. The journal has already risen to an upper mid-table position in the "Veterinary Sciences" category of the Journal Citation Report (57/134 in 2008), from its previous position in the lower reaches of the category.

IREX Technologies Launches IREX DR800SG E-Book Reader

IREX Technologies has launched the IREX DR800SG e-book reader.

Here's an excerpt from the press release:

IREX Technologies today wrote a new chapter in digital reading, combining technology that provides a traditional reading experience with an open approach to buying and transferring content. The company unveils the IREX DR800SG—a sleek, 8.1-inch, touch-screen eReader that offers multi-mode 3G wireless capabilities.

Complementing the modern design of the device, users can purchase books, newspapers or magazines from a wide variety of sources. In addition, IREX supports multiple formats including industry standard ePub format and multiple DRM solutions, rather than a single, "closed" proprietary format that locks content to a specific device.

The IREX device is supported by key partners Barnes & Noble, Inc., Best Buy, Qualcomm and Verizon Wireless, which together provide access to the content, retail presence and the most reliable wireless network in the country, setting the DR800SG apart in an increasingly competitive market. . . .

The IREX device includes the Barnes & Noble eBookstore from Barnes & Noble, the world's largest bookseller, giving users access to more than 750,000 titles, including new releases and bestsellers at $9.99. Barnes & Noble expects its eBookstore ( will increase to well over one million titles within the next year, inclusive of every available eBook and eBook originals from book publishers. . . .

3G wireless connectivity for the IREX device is powered by Verizon Wireless' network — the nation 's largest and most reliable wireless network. With wireless connectivity, customers can purchase and quickly download an eBook from an airport gate, couch or coffee shop — without being tethered to a PC.

Read more about it at "iRex DR800SG Hands On: An Ebook Reader, Unchained" and "IREX DR800SG: The Flip Side of Digital Reading."

Digital Processing Librarian at Harvard

The Harvard University Library is recruiting a Digital Processing Librarian (0.5 FTE five month term appointment that will end on February 28, 2010).

Here's an excerpt from the ad:

Under the general direction and supervision of the Open Collections Program (OCP) Manager, incumbent serves as member of highly collaborative production team to digitize historic collections. Responsibilities and tasks will include: contributing to materials preparation, tracking, and transfer activities; and undertaking digital object review, troubleshooting, and enhancement. Will liaise with curators, conservators, digitization service providers, and other members of the OCP team to designate selected items to appropriate workflows in a timely manner. Performs regular updates to the OCP Workflow Database to ensure that item and batch-level information is accurate and complete.

"Digital Preservation: Logical and Bit-Stream Preservation Using Plato, EPrints and the Cloud"

Adam Field, David Tarrant, Andreas Rauber, and Hannes Kulovits have self-archived their "Digital Preservation: Logical and Bit-Stream Preservation Using Plato, EPrints and the Cloud" presentation on the ECS EPrints Repository.

Here's an excerpt from the abstract:

This tutorial shows attendees the latest facilities in the EPrints open source repository platform for dealing with preservation tasks in a practical and achievable way, and new mechanisms for integrating the repository with the cloud and the user desktop, in order to be able to offer a trusted and managed storage solution to end users. . . .

The benefit of this tutorial is the grounding of digital curation advice and theory into achievable good practice that delivers helpful services to end users for their familiar personal desktop environments and new cloud services.

Google Book Settlement Fairness Hearing Postponed

U.S. District Judge Denny Chin has postponed the October 7th fairness hearing for the Google Book Search Settlement; however, a status conference will occur on that date.

Here's the ruling.

Read more about it at "Google Judge Calls 'Status Conference' for 7th October" and "Judge Agrees to Postpone Google Books Hearing."

"Copyright as Information Policy: Google Book Search from a Law and Economics Perspective"

Douglas Lichtman, Professor of Law at the UCLA School of Law, has self-archived "Copyright as Information Policy: Google Book Search from a Law and Economics Perspective" in SSRN.

Here's an excerpt:

The copyright system has long been understood to play a critical role when it comes to the development and distribution of creative work. Copyright serves a second fundamental purpose, however: it encourages the development and distribution of related technologies like hardware that might be used to duplicate creative work and software that can manipulate it. When it comes to issues of online infringement, then, copyright policy serves two goals, not one: protect the incentives copyright has long served to provide authors, and at the same time facilitate the continued emergence of innovative Internet services and equipment. In this Chapter, I use the Google Book Search litigation as a lens through which to study copyright law’s efforts to serve these two sometimes-competing masters. The Google case is an ideal lens for this purpose because both the technology implications and the authorship implications are apparent. With respect to the technology, Google tells us that the only way for it to build its Book Search engine is to have copyright law excuse the infringement that is today by design part of the project. With respect to authorship, copyright owners are resisting that result for fear that the infringement here could significantly erode both author control and author profitability over the long run. I myself am optimistic that copyright law can and will balance these valid concerns. The Chapter explains how, discussing not only the formal legal rules but also the economic intuitions behind them.

University of Wollongong Repository Hits One Million Download Mark

The University of Wollongong's institutional repository, Research Online, has now had a million full-text downloads.

Here's an excerpt from the press release:

The millionth paper to be accessed was a 2006 conference paper by Faculty of Informatics academics Katina Michael, A. McNamee and MG Michael entitled "The Emerging Ethics of Humancentric GPS Tracking and Monitoring."

Mr Organ said the Michaels are some of the strongest supporters of Research Online, with more than 160 items on the site.

"I am absolutely delighted," Katina Michael said. "Research Online has been instrumental in getting our research out to the wider community—fellow academics, industry, government and citizens. It is such a powerful tool."

"An academic has the ability to control the release of their papers at any point throughout the publication process… but I think the real contribution of Research Online has been in forming cross-institutional and transnational networks."

Research Online also gives academics the ability to see which of their papers are the most popular, and Katina Michael says this has been useful for her research.

"My fellow collaborators and I have been able to gauge which papers are being downloaded most and when. We can then make some basic assumptions about the significance of various research endeavours and direct our efforts accordingly."

Serials Review Special Issue on Asia-Pacific Repositories

Serials Review has published a special issue on Asia-Pacific repositories.

Here's an selection of article titles:

  • "Exploring Research Data Hosting at the HKUST Institutional Repository"
  • "An Integrative View of the Institutional Repositories in Hong Kong: Strategies and Challenges"
  • "Open Access in Hong Kong—Where Are We Now?"
  • "Promoting the Visibility of Educational Research through an Institutional Repository"
  • "Research Online: Digital Commons as a Publishing Platform at the University of Wollongong, Australia"
  • "Towards Scholarly HTML"

"SPARC Member Spotlight: Testing the Waters with Open-Access Funds (University of California at Berkeley and the University of Calgary)"

SPARC has released "SPARC Member Spotlight: Testing the Waters with Open-Access Funds (University of California at Berkeley and the University of Calgary)."

Here's an excerpt:

In a move to encourage researchers to make their work open to the public, the University of California at Berkeley and the University of Calgary established funds that faculty and graduate students could use cover publication charges for open-access journals. Berkeley and Calgary are two of several funds established in recent years, including the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the University of Wisconsin-Madison, the University of Tennessee at Knoxville, the University of Oregon, and other sites in the U.K.

After a year of implementation in Calgary and Berkeley, librarians at these universities are reviewing their efforts and are pleased to report on the results.