|Weekly News Digest
July 31, 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 ITI’s Twitter account: @ITINewsBreaks.
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NRC Advisory Committee Reports on 'A Digital Strategy for the Library of Congress'
A special committee of the National Research Council (NRC) has finished a report that contains recommendations for an information technology strategy for the Library of Congress (LC). The report, sponsored by LC, notes that the library must act quickly to address strategy, management, funding, and staffing issues that threaten to render the institution second-rate among today's digital libraries.
The library must continue not only to handle artifacts in traditional media—such as the printed book, which will play a dominant role in archiving information for decades to come—but also to collect and preserve electronic books, newspaper Web sites, digital music, and other forms of electronic information. So far, the library has engaged in ad hoc experiments and pilot projects, but has not developed a broad strategy or the necessary capability to accomplish this tremendous task.
The report also recommends increased funding for staff training, upgrading the technology infrastructure, and increased outreach activities. The library must take the lead and work with electronic publishers and the R&D community to resolve legal, economic, and technical questions that relate to digital works. Further, the library should establish contractual arrangements with a set of publishers and distributors of significant digital content.
Copies of the full report will be available in the fall from the National Academy Press (202/334-3313, 800/624-6242).
Source: National Research Council
Bell & Howell Launches New Education Division and Reports 2Q Earnings
Bell & Howell Co. (http://www.bellhowell.com) has announced a new education division, XanEdu, with its core services and products focused exclusively on higher-education courses, and officially launched its new Web site (http://www.xanedu.com). The new unit is charged with operating "with entrepreneurial speed, flexibility, and market responsiveness to deliver premium curriculum content and breakthrough CourseWare products to students and educators, anytime, anywhere." The Web site not only serves as the company's primary marketing vehicle, but also as the gateway to the rapidly expanding collection of unique online content and services XanEdu offers.
James Roemer, Bell & Howell chairman, president, and CEO, said: "The development of our new Internet products, such as CoursePacks, CasePacks, and the Research Engines, are our first move into the higher education curriculum space. By leveraging and focusing the assets we have in ProQuest to surround university instructional materials, we are delivering unparalleled products and services to individual instructors and students."
The company also announced its second-quarter earnings of 20 cents per share, versus 18 cents last year, on net sales of $95 million, showing an 8-percent increase from a year earlier. The Information and Learning Division (formerly UMI) was the leading performer, reporting sales growth of 20 percent, while other operating divisions of the company lagged.
Source: Bell & Howell
NewsEdge Announces Strategic Relationship with Primedia’s IndustryClick
NewsEdge Corp. (http://www.newsedge.com) has announced a strategic relationship with IndustryClick (http://www.industryclick.com), a unit of Primedia, Inc. Headed by Tim Andrews, former CEO of Factiva, IndustryClick develops vertical business communities. Under the terms of the multiyear agreement, NewsEdge and IndustryClick will work together in several ways:
In May, NewsEdge announced that it had broadened its focus beyond providing information to corporate knowledge workers to become a syndicator of e-content and global news services to other Web sites. [See Paula J. Hane's May 15, 2000 NewsBreak "NewsEdge Announces a Change in Direction with New E-Content Strategy."] The deal between NewsEdge and IndustryClick represents a successful implementation of this strategy and should prove beneficial for customers of both companies, according to the announcement.
- NewsEdge will supply its eTopics content for Internet and wireless applications within IndustryClick.
- Through the NewsEdge Refinery, content from Primedia's Intertec business-to-business magazine publishing group will be processed, coded, and tagged for electronic use on IndustryClick's sites.
- NewsEdge will syndicate content from Primedia's Intertec publishing group to NewsEdge corporate customers worldwide.
Source: NewsEdge Corp.
Law.com Announces New Content Partnerships
Law.com, a privately held company that offers a comprehensive site with current legal news and analysis, e-commerce, and job information, has announced agreements with two new content partners: The Deal, LLC and Alert Publications, Inc. Law.com's audience will now have access to the latest breaking deal transaction news published by The Daily Deal and its Web site (http://www.thedailydeal.com)—the international newspaper and site that offer content to dealmakers worldwide. This content will be added to Law.com's general news as well as to its Practice Centers, which offer breaking news and case opinions specific to corporate law, employment law, intellectual property law, technology law, and litigation. In exchange, The Daily Deal and thedailydeal.com will have access to selected features published on the Law.com site.
The Alert Publications partnership provides useful material for Law.com's new legal librarians' channel by offering research-oriented content from Alert Publications' Legal Information Alert, Business Information Alert, and Research Advisor. Subscriptions to the three publications will also be sold online at Law.com's legal professionals' store.
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