|Weekly News Digest
June 19, 2014 — 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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Oyster Launches Android App
The Oyster ebook subscription service now offers its free app to Android device and NOOK HD users via the Google Play store. Kindle Fire users can access the app on Oyster’s website.
The Oyster team redesigned the app to cater to Android devices by adding new typography, modes (for daytime and nighttime reading), layouts, enhanced colors, and a new theme (featuring a high-contrast typeface for outdoor reading). Other design upgrades include more detailed ebook descriptions with related-title lists and the addition of “read time,” which shows the approximate time it will take to read a title. Users can also turn an ebook’s pages by pressing the volume buttons on their devices and view editors’ notes for hundreds of titles that give short reviews of the ebooks.
New features incorporated into the Android app are also now available for the iOS app (version 7 or later).
Wiley Enhances Its Science Solutions
Wiley acquired SimBioSys, a scientific software provider of tools used in the drug discovery process. Chemists use these tools, including the ARChem - Route Designer, to perform organic synthesis (designing synthetic routes for target molecules). ARChem’s organic chemistry system is derived from databases such as Wiley’s ChemInform Reaction Library (CIRX). The Canada-based company is privately held, and terms of its agreement with Wiley were not disclosed.
“By combining our traditional published content and databases with machine learning algorithms, we can support chemists in innovative research as they advance world knowledge” while using Wiley Science Solutions, says Steve Miron, Wiley’s SVP of global research.
Institutions Gain Altmetric Functionality
The Altmetric for Institutions web-based software application debuted as a way for higher education institutions to monitor and report on research impact using more detailed analysis than traditional citation metrics. Altmetric collates scholarly article mentions across social media, blog posts, public policy documents, and other online sources. It created this new tool with input from global academic establishments.
Librarians, research administrators, communication officers, and faculty can use the tool to track and evaluate the dissemination of research by:
- Browsing or searching collated mentions of academic papers
- Assessing early-stage impact of papers
- Identifying influencers to provide evidence of impact for improving the research process, funding applications, etc.
- Tracking attention for specific projects or groups at the departmental and researcher levels
- Monitoring (filtering, reporting, and analyzing) data and exporting the results to Excel format or PDF
- Integrating with existing institutional repositories and other systems
- Accessing visualizations of scores measuring the quantity and quality of attention for research
Springer and IOUG Develop Publishing Initiative
Springer Science+Business Media’s Apress Media, LLC partnered with the Independent Oracle User Group (IOUG) to create IOUG Press, which will publish titles related to Oracle technologies.
IOUG members and leadership will provide Apress with technical reviews of content and authorship of titles. In return, Apress will offer IOUG members exclusive discounts on Oracle publications.
IOUG Press released its first titles on June 17. Eight more titles will follow by the end of 2014.
Source: Springer Science+Business Media
Court of Appeals Keeps Sherlock Holmes in the Public Domain
The Seventh U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the ruling that the characters in the Sherlock Holmes series created by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle are in the public domain. All of the Sherlock Holmes stories written before 1923 are not under copyright protection, and the final 10 stories written from 1923 to 1927 are copyrighted until 95 years after the original date of publication. The court’s decision is as follows:
We cannot find any basis in statute or case law for extending a copyright beyond its expiration. When a story falls into the public domain, story elements—including characters covered by the expired copyright—become fair game for follow-on authors, … so only original elements added in the later stories remain protected.
Source: Seventh U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals
D&B Aids Discovery of Taxpayer Information
D&B launched D&B Revenue Advisor to help state and local tax and revenue agencies find complete, accurate, and timely commercial taxpayer information. D&B’s proprietary data and analytics are now accessible using the WebFOCUS dashboard, which provides D&B and Information Builders customers with a 360-degree view of commercial taxpayers so they can optimize tax, discovery, audit, and collections processes.
According to Laura Kelly, D&B’s chief global product officer, D&B Revenue Advisor will maximize efficiency and revenues because it gives customers a single solution for accessing data and scores. Information Builders’ president and CEO Gerald D. Cohen says, “By collaborating with D&B, we’re enabling key government groups to analyze information to optimize decision-making at every level.”
Source: Dun & Bradstreet
ByWater Solutions Debuts Koha 3.14
ByWater Solutions released Koha 3.14. This version, created with input from 16 of ByWater Solutions’ partner libraries, has 13 new features, 161 enhancements, and 471 bug fixes to features.
Partner libraries sponsored Koha’s developments, such as a course reserves module, a batch renewal tool that uses bar codes, and integration with OverDrive that shows search results and real-time availability. Other updates to Koha include keyword searches, the capability to define rules for batch-modifying MARC records, and acquisitions workflow and cataloging improvements.
Source: ByWater Solutions
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