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ERIC Number: EJ854513
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2006
Pages: 8
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 17
ISSN: ISSN-1552-3233
E-Books: Why They Matter for Distance Education--And How They Could Get Much Better
Rothman, David
Innovate: Journal of Online Education, v2 n6 Aug-Sep 2006
In his assessment of the current state of e-book technology, David Rothman illustrates the value of e-books for educators, accounts for why the technology has not been more widely embraced, and discusses new developments that suggest a better future for e-books. For educators, particularly distance educators, e-books hold great potential to revolutionize the process of reading and research. In addition to being easily searchable and transmittable, e-books can allow for interactive functions such as embedded study questions, direct linking to cited works, reader annotation, and spaces for collaborative discussion. However, one obstacle to the greater acceptance of e-books comes from critics who insist that the technology cannot replicate the experience of reading paperbound books. In response to these critics, Rothman illustrates how recent technological advances have significantly reduced the perceived gap between print books and e-books, and he maintains that future developments will reduce the gap even further. Rothman then addresses obstacles that arise from incompatible e-book software/hardware formats as well as copyright-protection devices that severely limit the functional properties of e-books. In doing so, he outlines how an upcoming software standard (the OpenReader Standard) as well as an associated open-source software application (dotReader) will help remedy some of these problems while simultaneously setting a precedent for more flexible approaches to copy protection in e-book technology as a whole.
Fischler School of Education and Human Services. Nova Southeastern University, 1750 NE 167th Street, North Miami Beach, FL 33162. Tel: 800-986-3223; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: Adult Education; Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A