Author archives

David Rothman is the founder and publisher of the TeleRead e-book site and cofounder of LibraryCity.org. He is also author of The Solomon Scandals novel and six tech-related books on topics ranging from the Internet to laptops. Passionate on digital divide issues, he is now pushing for the creation of a national digital library endowment.

Promising DPLA debut–but please don’t confuse with a full-fledged ‘public library’ demo

David H. Rothman discusses the strengths and gaps of the current site, which he notes is a demo project with which the DPLA hopes to raise money and attract more, and much needed volunteers. The organization also plans to use this iteration as an opportunity to apply lessons learned to future versions as the project navigates forward in a demonstrably challenging time for libraries.

Subjects: Features, Libraries & Librarians, Library Marketing, Library Software & Technology, Web Accessibility

A national digital library endowment: How Americas billionaires could be modern Carnegies for real

David H. Rothman discusses how e-books, collections of electrons, not atoms, come with special advantages. They eliminate physical-shelving costs and are especially useful for blind people and others with special needs. Digital technology can also help multiply the selection of books for residents of small towns as well as large cities with underfunded neighborhood library branches. This technology can likewise drive down the costs of providing best-sellers and help with popularizing authoritative information on key issues such as health and finance.

Subjects: E-Books, Gadgets, Internet Resources - Web Links, Legal Technology, Libraries & Librarians

Not enough library e-books to feed your new gadget properly? Well-stocked national digital library systems could help

On December 31, 2012 more than 100 patrons of the District of Columbia Public Library were lined up electronically for 10 e-book copies of John Grisham’s new novel about the murder of a federal judge. Some 400+ D.C. library users awaited 60 electronic copies of Gillian Flynn’s new book, the best-selling fiction title on the New York Times list. In light of consistent demand across the country, David H. Rothman continues to champion the case for affordable, wide spread access to e-books through public libraries. These institutions continue to struggle with dwindling budgets, increased demand for services and copyright/licensing laws impacting e-book cost and distribution.

Subjects: E-Books

Googles powerful Nexus 10 Android tablet as a library patrons delight: The hardware and the apps that shine on it

David H. Rothman reviews the Android Nexus 10, which he considers a standout from among the well known group of available e-book readers. David documents key reasons to choose this e-reading machine, including the 10-inch screen, which can easily display 500 or 600 words of text. He also highlights a wide range of essential apps available for researchers, librarians, knowledge managers and of course, book lovers.

Subjects: Features, Gadgets, Gadgets/Gizmos, Internet Resources - Web Links, Internet Trends, Library Software & Technology, Mobile Technology, News Resources, Search Engines, Search Strategies, Technology Trends

The risks if the DPLA wont create a full-strength national digital library system: Setbacks for K-12, family literacy, local libraries, preservation, digital divide efforts?

David H. Rothman maintains that the Harvard-originated national digital library initiative is an underachiever in K-12 matters and identifies other areas where the DPLA could better serve America’s libraries and their users. These areas range from family literacy to the content creation needs of local libraries, preservation and digital divide efforts. Rothman details specific remedies to these challenges consistent with his strong advocacy on behalf of strengthening national digital library systems.

Subjects: Digital Archives, Features, Libraries & Librarians, Virtual Library

Hurricane Sandy and the national digital library issue: Could we have stopped or slowed down global warming?

David Rothman’s commentary maintains it is imperative that civic matters, including those that resulted in the aftermath of hurricane Sandy, not become lost opportunities to find and share information, and to make best use of lessons learned. Accountability, effective communications, access to actionable information, building reliable infrastructures, and providing dynamic access to agile solutions during times of national crisis provide opportunities to leverage the evolving Digital Public Library of America.

Subjects: Features, Internet Resources, Internet Resources - Web Links, Libraries & Librarians

DPLA Grant: Possible Synergy Between Libraries, Schools and Newspapers

David H. Rothman, a leading national digital library advocate, continues his series on the evolving framework for the Digital Public Library of America. In this column, he discusses the impact of new program funding from the Knight Foundation. Rothman believes the potential result could be the start of new synergies between libraries, schools, and newspapers – leading to more interest in civic participation, better monitoring of government at all levels, and maybe even a revival of many young people’s interest in newspapers.

Subjects: Features, Libraries & Librarians

Friends of Quinn and LD OnLine: Two good Web sites illustrate need for separate national digital library systems – public and academic

David H. Rothman highlights how two Web sites on learning disabilities demonstrate the need for separate but tightly intertwined national digital library systems – one system public, one academic. Collaborating with an academic system, a national digital public system could work with local library sites and public partners at different levels to provide the most trustworthy information available to all patrons.

Subjects: Features, Libraries & Librarians, Library Marketing, Reference Services