Blogs

What’s the Future Hold for Altmetrics?

Altmetrics (a non-traditional assessment of citation-impact metrics in scholarly publishing) have passed their fifth birthday. While there are debates taking place about important issues (the potential gaming of altmetrics, how to weight the various events, etc.), they are helping to engage readers and drive article downloads. Who hasn’t found themselves clicking on a most shared/commented…

In the Age of OER, Curation Will Be King

A major conundrum for educational publishers is what to do about Open Educational Resources (OER) -- free materials, usually available in digital form, that educators can use in their classrooms in lieu of textbooks or more traditional supplemental materials. At a time when many K-12 publishers are still struggling to establish profitable digital business models,…

Why Is Text-to-Speech Only an Afterthought?

I spend a lot of time commuting to and from work in my car and I try to use the time wisely. I cycle through a playlist of podcasts every week but I feel like I’m missing out on other types of content. Regardless of your daily commute, I’ll bet you’d feel the same way…

Other Staff Bloggers
Sales, Marketing & Data Intel

Altmetrics (a non-traditional assessment of citation-impact metrics in scholarly publishing) have passed their fifth birthday. While there are debates taking place about important issues (the potential gaming of altmetrics, how to weight the various events, etc.), they are helping to engage readers and drive article downloads. Who hasn’t found themselves clicking on a most shared/commented…

Books as a technology have been around for such a long time that it’s easy to forget that they were once major innovations themselves: Before the book there was the scroll, and the clay tablet before that, and it wasn’t until the end of the 16th century that modern indexes were invented, still largely the…

Editor's Note: This post was originally published on The Future of Publishing. Netflix released its latest quarter earnings report today. In a Letter to Shareholders (PDF), Netflix CEO Reed Hastings described the competitive landscape the company faces. In doing so he framed the challenge faced today by all publishers, certainly all book, newspaper and magazine publishers.…

Ebooks & Digital Media

A major conundrum for educational publishers is what to do about Open Educational Resources (OER) -- free materials, usually available in digital form, that educators can use in their classrooms in lieu of textbooks or more traditional supplemental materials. At a time when many K-12 publishers are still struggling to establish profitable digital business models,…

I spend a lot of time commuting to and from work in my car and I try to use the time wisely. I cycle through a playlist of podcasts every week but I feel like I’m missing out on other types of content. Regardless of your daily commute, I’ll bet you’d feel the same way…

This week Amazon won a contract to provide digital textbooks and other educational materials to the New York City school district. It signifies a major milestone in Amazon’s strategic push into the K-12 market. The three-year contract is worth $30 million and requires Amazon to build a custom ebook marketplace for the NYC school district,…

Printing & Manufacturing

One of the most fascinating aspects of new technologies is how they open doors for new business models. And this is very true in the evolving world of book publishing. The book publishing model has many challenges, most notably how the established system of author advances, large superstore preorders, and returns limits what will be…

On February 25th Book Business hosted a webinar titled “Trends for 2016: The Future of Books in the New Year,” which asked experts from the Book Industry Study Group, the Book Manufacturers Institute, and the Independent Book Publishers Association to share their perspectives on the industry and the major trends that will drive its future…

I attended Ricoh’s Publishing Executive Symposium this week in Boulder, Colorado, to learn how digital book printing is affecting all levels of the industry. Publishers, book manufacturers, and paper suppliers were in attendance, representing the complete supply chain of the book industry. The big takeaway was that digital book printing is growing and will continue…

Business Strategy

In today’s book business environment, teamwork and collaboration is more important than ever. We are often working with teams around the country and around the world. These days publishers, authors, agents, editors, PR, and marketing people are often in different locations. The new economy has opened options for creative schedules, work-at-home options, and working with…

Creative industries are often hesitant to embrace data-driven strategies, fearing that the numbers might supplant creativity. Online publishing platform Inkitt holds the opposite view and was founded on the conviction that data can discover the next bestseller. Inkitt describes itself as the first data-driven digital publisher. The platform has a built-in algorithm that analyzes reader…

One of the sessions I was most excited to attend at this year’s Digital Book World Conference & Expo was Rand Fishkin’s talk on search engine optimization (SEO) and book discovery. Fishkin is the CEO and founder of Moz, a leading SEO and content marketing software company. I anticipated this session would be filled with…

News

Remember the excitement surrounding the launch of Amazon’s Kindle eight years ago? It was a clunky device, even by 2007 standards, but it was revolutionary. One of the original Kindle’s breakthrough features was the ability to download books via cellular network. The e-Ink display and extremely long battery life also led to its popularity despite…

In a trendy coffee shop called Elixr, on a side street off of Philadelphia’s toney Rittenhouse Square, there is funky décor, loud music, strong coffee, and, by the door, a small vending machine. From this machine, for two dollars, one can purchase not cigarettes or candy or any of those other typically unhealthy vending machine wares, but, instead, a short story.

 

It is the time of year when we are awash in “Best of” lists, and many worthy publications have put forth their recommendations for the best books of the year that is about to pass us by. A friend of mine professed herself overwhelmed by the lists, and asked me if I would curate them for her.  Here, for Julie and for the rest of you, is my “best of the best,” a list of books I think you should find a time and a place for in your busy schedule.