The networked library of the future as bookseller

Could libraries become sellers of digital content as well as e-book lenders and promoters of good writing? And should publishers be more flexible in how they let libraries operate? Here is my write-up from a session at DBW on how libraries fits into this ecosystem. It was enlightening in any number of ways but more of that later . . . Read more »


DBW, day two: a storm is coming (literally)

Greetings from Digital Book World, where I have just put the following thoughts together based on day one, and a significantly less interesting (so far) second day. Some people are definitely escaping earlier because of the snow storm, while there are as many people in the coffee area as there are in the break-out sessions, which have been surprisingly mixed. Day two has been data heavy, ISBN, ONIX, ePub3. Good stuff for some, but not so useful for forming an overall picture of where we are. Read more »

Review: Guinness World Records iPad app

I've reviewed this app for FutureBook: Being a child of the 80s I have extremely fond memories of Guinness World Records (GWR). One of my brothers was given an annual every year by my Mum. A boy not exactly in love with books, so the GWR annual was probably an attempt to encourage some reading between skateboarding and falling out of trees. Read more »

Review: Marcus Chown's Solar System app for iPad

Graeme Neill, The Bookseller's news editor reviews this app for FutureBook: One of Faber's first standalone's app is a surprising one. Instead of using its excellent literary backlist or perhaps something quirky based on QI or Harry Hill, it chose a look at the Solar System. Marcus Chown's the Solar System is an in-depth look at our immediate surroundings. The title screen features everything in the solar system from the Sun and Saturn to lesser known elements like Iapetus (one of Saturn's moons) to the Oort Cloud - a giant swarm of cometary nuclei that surrounds the solar system (what? Read more »

Digital rights debate headed to a Europe near you

Profile managing director Andrew Franklin mounted a robust defence of territorial rights agreements at Digital Book World in the first of what may become a prolonged battle over Europe as US publishers look to the continent's English-language speakers for digital growth. Read more »

Google's eBook Bestsellers

Google's Abe Murray has just released at DBW Google eBook bestsellers since the platform launched in the US late last year. No surprises here so far, but interesting. Also, further down is the list of top performing genres.

Bestsellers Read more »


DBW11: the beginning for publishers, the end for high street booksellers?

I am in New York at the Sheraton attending Digital Book World 2011. Key points so far emerging out of the introductory research presented by Forrester and the c.e.o. panel is that publishers regard 2010 as the the end of the beginning for the digital transition, while there are serious doubts about the future for high street booksellers, though Open Road's Jane Friedman did make a case for independents as "community" booksellers: the original users of social media. Interestingly, despite being well ahead of the UK, few US executives saw a viable economic model for the app. Read more »

Is the digital debate the solution or the problem?

 The great journalist Robert Fisk wrote a piece in the INDEPENDENT newspaper in 2005 which has stayed with me ever since because it articulated a feeling that had been growing since I’d left university a year earlier, a suspicion of the Read more »

What book publishers can learn from gaming.

Jay Franco, Producer of Gameloft's iPad app 'War In The Pacific' gives us his views on where the opportunities lie for publishing and gaming coming together: We collectively felt a real exciting opportunity in creating interactive books for the iPad, and we’ve put our attention there. Gameloft has proven its know-how in creating successful game apps, so we were excited to break new ground on the book-app side. Also, most iPad book-apps are currently for children; I believe we can do great interactive books for adults too. Read more »

Our First Year With Amazon Kindle as an Independent Publisher

It’s now a year since we started working on Kindle formats for our books and it’s been an interesting and ultimately very rewarding experience – but we are still learning. All our new titles are being launched in that format, and we are working on the back catalogue as budgets allow. Amazon provides free software for Kindle titles to work on virtually any device [from PCs to Android and iPhones, iPads and other tablets] and it’s only really when you get into it more you realise what a masterstroke that is. Read more »

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