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Weekly News Digest

December 22, 2008 — 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.

CLICK HERE to view more Weekly News Digest items.

Pilot Grant Program to Improve Internet Connections in Public Libraries

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (www.gatesfoundation.org) announced a pilot initiative designed to help public libraries in seven states secure faster internet connections so more people can access a full range of online applications and opportunities. The foundation has awarded $6,959,771 in combined grant funding to Connected Nation (www.connectednation.com), a nonprofit broadband internet advocacy group, and the American Library Association’s Office for Information Technology Policy (OITP; www.ala.org) to support improved internet connections for public libraries in Arkansas, California, Kansas, Massachusetts, New York, Texas, and Virginia.

Connected Nation will receive $6,107,882 to help each pilot state organize and host a broadband summit to gather and activate public library leaders, state and local officials, and other influencers who can support broadband internet in libraries throughout each state.

OITP will receive $851,889 to provide research and expertise that will help state library agencies develop and begin to implement strategies to ensure library broadband connections are sustainable. OITP also will develop and disseminate case studies demonstrating how public libraries can successfully sustain broadband for patrons.

A recent report compiled by the American Library Association titled "Libraries Connect Communities" found that 73% of public libraries are the only source of free, public internet access in their communities. Despite overwhelming demand for technology services, up to a third of all public libraries have internet connections that are too slow to meet the everyday needs of their patrons.

Connected Nation, OITP, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will work with state library agencies to improve and sustain internet connections in all public libraries within the pilot states to at least 1.5Mbps, or faster wherever feasible. States selected for the pilot Opportunity Online broadband grant program had high concentrations of public libraries with internet speeds of less than 1.5Mbps; public policy support to increase broadband in public libraries; and state library agencies that had taken steps to improve and sustain quality internet connections in libraries. If the pilot broadband grant program yields positive results in the seven pilot states, the foundation may expand its support to a limited number of additional states.

Source: the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

New Program Helps Libraries With Digitization and Access

BCR (www.bcr.org), BiblioLife (www.bibliolife.com), and Ingram Digital (www.ingramdigital.com) announced a new program designed to help libraries improve access to their collections through digitization. BCR’s Shelf2Life program digitizes pre-1923, U.S. published monographs and offers those and other previously digitized materials in both digital and print-on-demand formats.

The program works through close collaboration between the libraries, BCR, BiblioLife, and Ingram Digital. Participating libraries work with BCR to identify materials to digitize or to supply files of previously digitized titles. BCR uses its new imaging center to scan the books utilizing custom software developed by BiblioLife. BiblioLife then postprocesses each title assuring a quality digital book. BiblioLife delivers the ebook to Ingram Digital, which then adds the title to its MyiLibrary platform. Titles may also be delivered to Lightning Source so that the book can be offered as a print-on-demand title.

Libraries and other cultural heritage institutions can gain access to these once-hidden collections by subscribing to them through the Ingram Digital MyiLibrary platform. Readers who want a print copy of the book can purchase a copy through one of Lightning Source’s participating retail partners. Libraries and bookstores worldwide can also order copies wholesale via Ingram’s industry-leading ipage portal.

BCR (Bibliographical Center for Research) is a nonprofit, multistate library cooperative based in Aurora, Colo. BiblioLife launched the BiblioLife Network (BLN) in May 2008. BLN is a pragmatic end-to-end ecosystem aimed at addressing the huge challenges facing book preservationists around the world. The BLN includes libraries, library networks, archives, subject matter experts, and online communities. Ingram Digital and Lightning Source are Ingram content companies.

Source: BCR

Dow Jones Launches New Mobile Application for Sales Professionals

Dow Jones & Co. (www.dowjones.com) announced its new mobile application, Dow Jones Sales Triggers for iPhone and iPod Touch, available on the Apple App Store. Dow Jones Sales Triggers gives mobile professionals access to up-to-the-minute intelligence about business changes such as management moves, mergers, and new investments. This is particularly advantageous for sales professionals who need to stay on top of prospects and customers in their territories.

Dow Jones developed Dow Jones Sales Triggers in response to the needs of its growing business base. It is designed to deliver real intelligence based on facts and events that signal solid sales opportunities. Dow Jones Sales Triggers makes it easy for sales professionals to take immediate action by showing which events actually trigger the best opportunities. Additionally, users can look up a company or an executive to retrieve key information and to find the right individuals at target companies included in the triggers.

As professionals seek to outperform their competition during turbulent economic times, staying on top of the latest intelligence is imperative. No longer is it good enough to follow traditional business news and industry trades. The Dow Jones Sales Triggers application for iPhone and iPod touch devices truly gives professionals an advantage. Even while on the go, they can have instant access to the most important events, allowing them to make swift, decisive assessments and take action to beat their competition to new business opportunities.

Dow Jones Sales Triggers is available for free from Apple’s App Store on iPhone and iPod touch or at www.itunes.com/appstore in the business category.

For more information about Dow Jones Business & Relationship Intelligence visit www.solutions.dowjones.com/generateinc; or to learn more about the Dow Jones Enterprise Media Group, visit www.solutions.dowjones.com.

Source: Dow Jones & Co.



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