Bringing science and development together through news and analysis

  • E-books to revolutionise access to information


Google's recently announced plans to make millions of books from five major libraries available online have sparked a drive to make as much information as possible universally accessible.

In this article in Nature, Andreas von Bubnoff charts the rise of the e-book by analysing a variety of digitisation ventures.

From private initiatives such as Google to public ventures like the Open Content Alliance, von Bubnoff discusses the motivations, successes and challenges facing those attempting to create an online database of reading material.

Millions of books can now be searched for and browsed online, but many contentious issues remain, such as how digitisation infringes on copyright, what the implications for libraries could be, and whether it may lead to shallower reading.

Von Bubhoff concludes that although access to a mix of real books and e-books could be the best option, the current wave of digitisation initiatives will certainly revolutionise and improve access to information.

Link to full article in Nature

We encourage you to republish this article online and in print, it’s free under our creative commons attribution license, but please follow some simple guidelines:
  1. You have to credit our authors.
  2. You have to credit SciDev.Net — where possible include our logo with a link back to the original article.
  3. You can simply run the first few lines of the article and then add: “Read the full article on SciDev.Net” containing a link back to the original article.
  4. If you want to also take images published in this story you will need to confirm with the original source if you're licensed to use them.
  5. The easiest way to get the article on your site is to embed the code below.
For more information view our media page and republishing guidelines.