"textbook publishing" entries

Four short links: 2 April 2013

Four short links: 2 April 2013

Master Coding, Rethinking Textbooks, Blocking Open Access, VPN from your Pi

  1. Analyzing mbostock’s queue.js — beautiful walkthrough of a small library, showing the how and why of good coding.
  2. What Job Would You Hire a Textbook To Do? (Karl Fisch) — notes from a Discovery Education “Beyond the Textbook” event. The issues Karl highlights for textbooks (why digital, etc.) are there for all books as we create this new genre.
  3. Neutralizing Open Access (Glyn Moody) — the publishers appear to have captured the UK group implementing the UK’s open access policy. At every single step of the way, the RCUK policy has been weakened. From being the best and most progressive in the world, it’s now considerably weaker than policies already in action elsewhere in the world, and hardly represents an increment on their 2006 policy. What’s at stake? Opportunity to do science faster, to provide source access to research for the public, and to redirect back to research the millions of pounds spent on journal subscriptions.
  4. Turn the Raspberry Pi into a VPN Server (LinuxUser) — One possible scenario for wanting a cheap server that you can leave somewhere is if you have recently moved away from home and would like to be able to easily access all of the devices on the network at home, in a secure manner. This will enable you to send files directly to computers, diagnose problems and other useful things. You’ll also be leaving a powered USB hub connected to the Pi, so that you can tell someone to plug in their flash drive, hard drive etc and put files on it for them. This way, they can simply come and collect it later whenever the transfer has finished.

Textbooks should not be consumed in isolation

How Inkling brings a community of learners into the textbook experience.

In this TOC Podcast, Matt MacInnis, founder and CEO of Inkling, talks about how his company is designing textbooks to treat content as one of the ways to learn from the book.

Four short links: 19 July 2011

Four short links: 19 July 2011

Async Javascript, PDF Malware, 2D Games, and Reinventing Textbooks

  1. Tame.js — async programming library for use with node.js and other V8 projects. (via Hacker News)
  2. The Rise of PDF Malware (Symantec) — detailed whitepaper showing the incident rate, techniques, and evasion techniques of PDF malware. Despite the fact that the number of PDF CVEs [Common Vulnerability/Exposure] are close to Microsoft Office’s numbers, the amount of nonunique PDF attacks Symantec has seen have increased dramatically, which shows that the PDF file format is being targeted more often within the last two years.
  3. cocos-2d — iPhone 2d game framework. (via Chuck Toporek)
  4. Nature’s Biology Textbooks — Nature changing the textbook publishing model, trialling in California. 50+ authors write the ebook, filtered through a (hard-working, I’m guessing) editor. This beats Kindle textbook rentals hands down. Another article says of the Nature trial: each school will be testing a different licensing and access model, which I hope for some includes printing out because Princeton’s Kindle trial showed (PDF) that ebooks don’t measure up to print books for annotation and some other key uses. (via The Daily News)

The time is now for digital textbooks

Digital textbooks have reached a moment of punctuated equilibrium.

We're poised to see all the years of digital textbook predictions and debate left behind. Change is here, and it's driven by technology, by the arrival of ebooks, and by a consensus among publishers and educators that the time is now.