Cathy Cavanaugh, Curriculum and Instruction. email@example.com
Terry Cavanaugh, Curriculum and Instruction. firstname.lastname@example.org
What is an eBook?
EBooks then are textual documents that have been converted and “published” in an electronic format that display on eBook readers, devices or computers using eBook software programs. A modern definition is that an eBook is a digital text file, but not limited to just text, which is displayed on some form of computer or electronic device.
Adobe Reader (.pdf): Learning to Think, Learning to Learn: What the Science of Thinking and Learning Has To Offer Adult Education Programs, (1999) National Institute for Literacy
Web Based (non html): Evaluating and Improving Undergraduate Teaching in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (2003) National Academies Press
Web Based (std html): Teaching Every Student in the Digital Age: Universal Design for Learning (2002) Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development
MS Reader (.lit): Macbeth University of Virginia eLibrary
How do eBooks work?
EBooks have three basic components: hardware, software, and the book file. The hardware of an eBook, known as a reader, is a computer style device or a computer running specific software that displays the “book” onto a screen. The software is the program which displays the book data on the device. The eBook file contains all of the “book” material: text, pictures, and what ever else the author can include.
The hardware, software, and file must all be compatible for the book you wish to use. For example MS Reader software can't be used on a Mac computer, while Palm Reader software can be used on a Palm, Mac or Windows device
Quick chart information about some of the major eBook platforms and their computer systems: Book Platforms/Formats
What are advantages and disadvantages?
|Many eBooks are free or inexpensive.
eBook files are relatively small and easily stored and shared.
eBook files don't actually weigh anything - just data.
eBooks are more interactive than most printed material.
eBooks have built in features such as highlighting, note taking, dictionaries, bookmarks and other annotations.
eBooks accommodate many learning needs and styles. Most eBooks can read aloud using a text-to-speech engine, and most can also change the text display size making large print available.
eBook files can be created using free software, web converters, or MS Word add-ins.
|eBooks require a reading device such as a computer or handheld.
eBook devices require a power source.
Not all books are currently available as eBooks.
Users new to eBooks will have a period of adjustment to screen reading.
Quick chart of eBook formats and their features: eBook Features
Where do eBooks come from?
Sample Online Libraries (90+) where eBooks can be accessed.
Software Programs used for creating eBooks:
Document conversion to HTML and Adobe PDF format.
iPod eBook Creator: http://www.ambience.sk/ipod-ebook-creator/ipod-book-notes-text-conversion.php
Converts text files into iPod notes
Tool for converting text documents into images for use with the PSP
MS Word Plug-in for Palm Mark Up: http://www.drscavanaugh.org/ebooks/word2pml.zip
Converts documents in word by adding Palm Markup Language (PML) code.
MS Word RMR Plug-in: http://www.microsoft.com/reader/developers/downloads/rmr.asp
Converts Word documents into MS ReadereBooks
Web page editor to create HTML documents
Word processor will create PDF, text, and HTML documents.
Palm DropBook: http://www.palmdigitalmedia.com/dropbook/download
Converter to create PalmReader eBook
Tool for converting documents into PDF, HTML, DOC, Excel, JPEG or BMP files
Standard (free) & Profession (cost) versions to create MS Reader eBooks
Tom’s eTextReader: http://pws.prserv.net/Fellner/Software/eTR.htm
eBook reader program displays plain text files in a book-like manner.
Ideas for using eBooks in teaching