|Weekly News Digest
September 25, 2000 — In addition to this week's NewsBreaks article and the monthly NewsLink Spotlight, Information Today, Inc. (ITI) offers Weekly News Digests that feature recent product news and company announcements. Watch for additional coverage to appear in the next print issue of Information Today. For other up-to-the-minute news, check out ITIís Twitter account: @ITINewsBreaks.
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barnesandnoble.com to Acquire Fatbrain.com, Will Be Featured Bookseller on Yahoo!
barnesandnoble.com (http://www.bn.com) has announced that it will acquire Fatbrain.com, Inc. (http://www.fatbrain.com), the third-largest online bookseller specializing in professional and technical titles for the corporate marketplace. Under the terms of the deal, barnesandnoble.com will acquire Fatbrain.com in a merger, and Fatbrain.com will become a wholly owned subsidiary of barnesandnoble.com. The deal is valued at approximately $64 million. The transaction is subject to regulatory and stockholder approvals.
According to the company, Fatbrain.com's Web-based services reach more than 3.5 million employee desktops at almost 350 Fortune 1000 companies worldwide. The company's Information Exchange offering is a comprehensive, Web-based method to catalog, present, and distribute corporate materials, ranging from third-party published works such as books and training materials to a company's own publishable content. There are more than 500 individual Fatbrain.com co-branded online bookstores and information-resource centers, most of which are accessed via the sponsoring organization's corporate intranet.
With the acquisition, barnesandnoble.com would own approximately 50 percent of MightyWords, a provider of digital content and formerly a subsidiary of Fatbrain.com. Fatbrain.com also announced an e-book alliance with netLibrary, Inc. (http://www.netlibrary.com). Fatbrain.com will add netLibrary e-books to the solutions currently provided to their corporate customers. netLibrary will host, manage, and distribute e-books to complement Web-based bookstores and information-management systems available through Fatbrain.com.
Separately, barnesandnoble.com announced a marketing agreement with Yahoo! Under the alliance, barnesandnoble.com will be the premier bookseller featured throughout the Yahoo! directory (http://www.yahoo.com) and a featured merchant on Yahoo! Shopping. In addition, an in-store retail component of the agreement teams Barnes & Noble, Inc. and Yahoo! with Spinway, Inc. to develop a free, co-branded Internet service for Barnes & Noble retail customers. The service, which is expected to launch next month, will be promoted extensively in 551 Barnes & Noble stores across the country and will include the distribution of CDs to facilitate registrations.
MediaDNA Announces Alliance with Inktomi
MediaDNA (http://www.mediadna.com), a provider of comprehensive digital rights management (DRM) solutions, has announced an alliance with Inktomi Corp. (http://www.inktomi.com) to provide Inktomi's Internet portal and destination site customers with immediate access to millions of pages of high-value content that would otherwise be unsearchable. As a result, Inktomi Search Engine users will obtain comprehensive, highly accurate search results including "deep Web" content, according to the company.
This enhanced search effectiveness is made possible through MediaDNA eLuminator, a service that iPublishers can use to help make their digital content searchable, even if it's protected. This includes content that might be deeply buried on a site, behind a firewall, in non-HTML formats (such as Adobe Acrobat PDF files), or protected with DRM technologies such as MediaDNA eMediator. eLuminator uses several patented technologies to automatically create more enriched, full-text indexing information. This dynamically created "spider food" allows for optimal relevancy matching of virtually any type of content. According to the company, eLuminator is unique in that, although the search engine has the benefit of full-text searching, the content owners' rights and revenues are in no way jeopardized. This solves the dilemma that has been frustrating content owners: how to protect high-value content on the Internet without making it invisible to searchers. Current users of eLuminator include Powerize, Qpass, ZDNet, and others.
West Group Launches Westlaw Anywhere
West Group has announced the release of Westlaw Anywhere, a service that provides fast, convenient, wireless access to Westlaw, and more. Users can access Westlaw content through wireless hand-held computers, such as the Palm VIIx hand-held with Palm.Net service. Westlaw Anywhere users can perform Westlaw searches to retrieve case synopses and headnotes, KeyCite results, and West Legal Directory attorney information. In addition, Westlaw Anywhere provides the ability to download e-books from West Group's online store to a variety of personal digital assistants.
Researchers can visit the West Group home page (http://www.westgroup.com) to download the free Westlaw query-application software, and to download five e-books currently available from the Online Store. Users can access the Westlaw content via a wireless service provider using their current Westlaw passwords and will be charged according to their current price plans. Pricing for the e-books will be based on subscriptions and will be comparable to that for the print products. More e-book titles are expected to be available by the end of this year.
Source: West Group
Company Sleuth Introduces Real-Time TV Broadcast Monitoring
Infonautics, Inc., a provider of personalized information agents and Internet sites (http://www.infonautics.com), has announced the launch of real-time monitoring of TV broadcasts for financial and business information about publicly traded companies. The co-brand agreement between Infonautics for its Company Sleuth site (http://www.companysleuth.com) and TVEyes (http://www.tveyes.com), reportedly the world's first real-time broadcast-monitoring and instant-alert service, claims to mark the first time a business Web site has brought real-time TV monitoring to the financial world.
Company Sleuth's new, TV-alerts feature leverages TVEyes' expertise in the real-time monitoring of television station transcripts through closed captioning. Company Sleuth users will be notified in their daily e-mail, as well as on the Web site, if the companies they are tracking are mentioned on any of the country's top business, financial, and network television channels, including CNNfn, CNBC, Bloomberg, MSNBC, ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX News, CSPAN, ESPN, and select public television stations. Additionally, Company Sleuth users can opt to receive immediate alerts through e-mail or wireless devices.
[Editor's note: According to Burrelle's (http://www.burrelles.com), a leading provider of broadcast monitoring services that offers e-mail alerts with verbatim broadcast transcripts, using closed captioning sometimes presents problems with phonetics and can miss providing full context and some spoken text, such as ad lib material.]
Source: Infonautics, Inc.
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