Monday, November 26, 2012

MediaWeek (V5, N48): History & Future of Books - Video with O'Reilly, Friedman, Auletta on Charlie Rose, Follett CEO, The Friendly Intenet + more

A discussion about the history and future of books with Tim O'Reilly, Jane Friedman, Jonathan Safran Foer, Ken Auletta, and David Kastan

Library Journal (Digital Shift) reports on the appointment of Mary Lee Schneider to CEO of $2.1Billion Follett Corporation.
In a signal that Follett Corporation is stepping up its digital efforts, the company’s board of directors has unanimously appointed Mary Lee Schneider to the position of president and chief executive officer. Schneider, who takes the reins on November 26, will be the first CEO in the $2.7 billion, privately-held company’s nearly 140-year history who is not a member of the Follett family and one of a handful of women to head a corporation of Follett’s size.
Schneider was previously president, digital solutions and chief technology officer at RR Donnelly. In that role, she was in charge of growing the Premedia Technologies business, a provider of digital photography, color management, and digital asset management services. She has also served on the Follett board of directors for 11 years.
What does Schneider’s appointment mean for the 65,000 elementary and high schools that rely on Follett for print and digital learning materials, library resources, and school management systems?
Penguin announces their plans to expand eBook lending notible for their selection of B&T rather than Overdrive or 3M (NYTimes):
The Penguin Group plans to announce on Monday that it is expanding its e-book lending program to libraries in Los Angeles and Cleveland and surrounding areas though a new distribution partner. In a pilot program that will begin this year, Penguin has worked with Baker & Taylor, a distributor of print and digital books, to start e-book lending programs in the Los Angeles County library system, which will reach four million people, and the Cuyahoga County system in Ohio.
The terms of lending will be the same as those they have been testing through 3M systems in New York public libraries since September: Penguin will sell any book to the libraries for lending six months after its release date, each book may be lent to only one patron at a time and at the end of a year the library must buy each book again or lose access to it.
Tim McCall, Penguin’s vice president for online sales and marketing, said the company was happy with the 3M pilot, which will continue and expand. “We are learning every month, but I think we have a model that works.”
Through a third partner, OneClickdigital, Penguin will also begin lending digital audiobooks to any library that is interested.
How did the internet get so nice? From NY Magazine:  I Really Like That You Like What I Like
Ten years ago, the web offered the worldview of a disaffected apparatchik and the perils of a Wild West saloon. Brawls broke out frequently; snideness triumphed; perverts, predators, and pettifoggers gathered in dark corners to prey on the lost and naïve. Now, though, the place projects the upbeat vigor of a Zumba session and the fellow-feeling of a neighborhood café. On Facebook, strangers coo at photos of your college roommate’s South American vacation. Op-eds—widely praised—are generously circulated. And warmth flows even where it probably shouldn’t. Today, you find that 27 human beings have “liked” an Instagram photo of your little sister’s breakfast muffin. You learn your best and smartest friend in high school—a girl you swapped big dreams with before falling out of touch—just married some guy with enormous bags under his eyes and the wild, deranged grin of Charlie Sheen. You are vaguely concerned, but the web is not. “Congratulations!!!” someone has written underneath the face of Crazy Rictus Man. “luv you guys!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” enthuses someone else. You count the exclamation points. There are sixteen. You wonder whether there is any Advil close at hand.

On Twitter, where the wonks and witty people are supposed to live, you find yourself lost again on a great plain of goodwill. John Doe, crossing the Twitter threshold, becomes “the brilliant @JohnDoe,” doing “wonderful” things. Videos that crop up are “amazing” or “hilarious”—sometimes both—and “excited” feelings prevail, especially when people are doing things that you cannot. (“Excited to be chatting with the brilliant Marshall Goldsmith at Per Se!!”) Inspiration triumphs. (“Sitting with Angelina Jolie @ #SaveChildren event! So inspiring, people helping humanity.”) Even when it doesn’t, though, people give thanks. (“Thank you needed this!!!” “no thank YOU!”) If you are in a mood to spread the love, which, probably, you are, it’s no problem to pass along your favorite tweets, nicely neutralized. “Retweets aren’t endorsements,” people say, like a newspaper claiming to run George Will’s column just because it happened to be lying around. The more you look, in fact, the harder it seems to find anything on the web that doesn’t read like an endorsement. It’s enough to make a web curmudgeon desperate for a little aloofness or even a few drops of the old bile. When did the Internet get so nice? 
From Twitter:
Much-loved Australian author Bryce Courtenay has died. His publisher has issued a statement:

BBC - Future - Technology - Will the internet become conscious?

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