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Weekly News Digest

May 20, 2010 — 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.

CLICK HERE to view more Weekly News Digest items.

OverDrive to Release Free eBook Reading Apps

OverDrive, Inc., a distributor of digital content for libraries, schools, and retailers, announced that it will release a series of apps that will combine ebooks, audiobooks, and interactive and multimedia content into one user-friendly application. The apps will be available for both mobile and desktop operating systems including Windows, Mac, iPhone, iPad, Android, Windows Mobile, and BlackBerry.

"The significant investments that libraries and retailers are making in premium ebook collections will have even greater value when users can access titles on their mobile devices," said David Burleigh, director of marketing for OverDrive. "Existing ebook collections, as well as upcoming interactive and multimedia content in a variety of genres, will be compatible with apps for iPhone, iPad, Android, and other mobile operating systems."

Android devices will be the first to experience OverDrive's app with integrated ebook reading features. The app will enable wireless downloads of premium, copy-protected ebooks, as well as enhanced accessibility and usability features such as text-to-speech. This and other mobile apps are being developed under a license agreement with Adobe and using the Adobe Reader Mobile 9 SDK. All OverDrive apps will support EPUB, PDF, and ebook content protection functionality, including library lending and expiration.

OverDrive is a full-service digital distributor of ebooks, audiobooks, music, and video. It delivers secure management, DRM protection, and download fulfillment services for hundreds of publishers and thousands of libraries, schools, and retailers, serving millions of end users. Founded in 1986, OverDrive is based in Cleveland, OH.

Source: OverDrive, Inc.

Gale and De Gruyter Enter into Distribution Agreement

Gale, part of Cengage Learning, and Walter de Gruyter GmbH & Co. KG, have entered into an agreement allowing Gale to distribute De Gruyter periodicals through a number of its academic resources.

"With a 260-year history in publishing, De Gruyter is highly regarded as an international publisher and we are happy to include selected De Gruyter periodicals in our electronic databases, primarily Academic One File, Health Reference Center Academic, Literature Resource Center, Psychology Collection and Communications and Mass Media," said Ken Breen, Gale's vice president of business development. "The newly added titles reflect the subject areas our customers have expressed interest in, providing users an even broader selection when using Gale's academic resources."

Titles included are academic periodicals in the areas of medicine, religion, sociology, and archaeology, plus heavy coverage of linguistics. Of the 37 periodicals included in this agreement, 35 are peer reviewed.

Source: Gale

ProQuest’s New Sanborn Maps Geo Edition

ProQuest is using a proprietary geo-referencing technology to enhance discovery in its Sanborn Map collection, one of libraries' most consulted sources of historical maps. ProQuest Sanborn Maps Geo Edition makes map research faster by enabling users to instantly pinpoint historical locations using modern geographic information. The company says the collection is now the world's largest source of historical GIS-enabled urban maps.

Founded in 1867, the Sanborn Map Company was the primary American publisher of fire insurance maps for nearly 100 years. Popular among researchers because of their detailed descriptions of streets, buildings, and properties in U.S. towns and cities, the maps were digitized by ProQuest to make them more accessible and searchable. Now, the geo-referencing in ProQuest Sanborn Maps Geo Edition overcomes the challenges of finding historic areas that have been renamed, remodeled, or wiped away over time by enabling users to search and compare these locations using modern addresses, geographic coordinates, and geographic maps.

Geo Edition includes a new search interface that enables users to access more than 60,000 geo-referenced maps, covering some of the most populous and historical cities in the United States. Maps can be viewed individually in greater detail with rotation, panning, cropping, and dynamic zoom in/out features. An integrated dynamic overlay map viewer allows maps to be compared and contrasted over time with multiple maps from the same city and against modern day street, satellite, and hybrid views. Geo Edition also connects with other geo-spatial content through GeoTIFF files that can be used to import data into the map files.

Geo Edition is an all-new product that's available through subscription or permanent site license. 

Source: ProQuest

Open Book Alliance Releases Comprehensive Analysis of Proposed Google Books Settlement

The Open Book Alliance has released a comprehensive analysis that it says details how the proposed Google Books Settlement violates international laws and treaties. For the first time, the proposed class action settlement between Google, the Association of American Publishers, and the Author's Guild has been fully evaluated to determine the claims and remedies that other nations may seek through the World Trade Organization for the violations that an approved Google Books Settlement would incur.

Cynthia Arato, partner at the law firm of Macht, Shapiro, Arato and Isseries and a prominent litigator on intellectual property and copyright issues, finds that "numerous provisions of the proposed Google Books settlement would, if approved, violate the treaty obligations of the U.S. If the settlement is approved, it may give rise to legal action against the U.S. before an international tribunal and will certainly expose the U.S. to diplomatic stress."

Specifically, Arato found that:

The settlement would (1) grant Google automatic rights to exploit digitally millions of books without requiring Google to obtain any authorization from any foreign copyright owner or author; and (2) require these foreign rights holders to jump through burdensome hoops simply to exercise a watered-down contractual right - that the settlement creates - to halt such use.

Foreign nations that wish to challenge the U.S. over treaty violations of the settlement may do so before the World Trade Organization. Violations can lead to financial penalties or trade sanctions against the U.S. The governments of France and Germany have already formally objected to the proposed settlement.

A full version of the study can be found here:

Source: Open Book Alliance

ZoomInfo Provides Free Sales Prospecting Tool to Small Businesses

ZoomInfo announced that FreshContacts, its sale prospecting tool, is now available free to small businesses and entrepreneurs. FreshContacts enables executives to exchange their business contacts for 2 free months of unlimited access to ZoomInfo's directory of more than 45 million people at five million companies. For small businesses and entrepreneurs on a budget, swapping contacts is a way to jumpstart their lead generation through valuable intelligence on prospects for free.

FreshContacts empowers entrepreneurs and small businesses to do the following:

  • Identify sales targets: Search for companies by focus area, industry, size, geography, and up to 20 other criteria.
  • Find buyers and influencers: Using more than 20 criteria, clients can find and research key executives at prospect companies.
  • Warm cold calls: Obtain rapport-building details about people and companies before picking up the phone or walking into a meeting.
  • Get up-to-date contact information: Find postal addresses, phone numbers, and email addresses for companies, key employees, and critical decision makers.
  • Close business faster: Get a foot in the door faster by identifying multiple contacts at target companies.

Launched in December 2009, FreshContacts was initially offered to jobseekers looking to gain an edge in one of the most competitive employment markets in recent history. To date, more than 37,000 business professionals have downloaded FreshContacts to find employment opportunities and make connections. With free access to actionable insights on potential employers these jobseekers have been able to reduce the length of their job searches. On the heels of this success, ZoomInfo has extended the FreshContacts offer to individuals at small companies who need vital lead generation tools and intelligence to grow their businesses in this rebounding economy.

Source: ZoomInfo

HyperOffice Releases Cloud-Computing HyperOffice Collaboration Suite for SMBs

HyperOffice has made the new version of its cloud-computing messaging and collaboration suite widely available to small and medium-sized businesses. Today's release (May 20, 2010) brings to an end a successful beta test program that spanned 6 months, thousands of users, and continuous enhancements-including innovations guided by a customer-driven product development committee that helped to refine the user interface as HyperOffice reinvented the entire suite.

The software-as-a-services suite makes it easy for company owners, employees, customers, partners and suppliers to run and grow a business by working together, planning projects, sharing documents, scheduling meetings, and more. HyperOffice integrates a range of software-as-a-service business applications over the Internet-shared online calendars and contacts, business class email, document collaboration, project management, web conferencing, databases and web forms; forums, polls and group wikis; project and task portals, intranets and extranets; user rights, versioning, commenting, backup, and more.

Under the hood, rebuilt from the ground up, Ajax and an array of Web 2.0 technologies power the improvements in performance, scalability, and security. Where the business user meets the screen, the new version introduces a streamlined, intuitive interface that is instantly familiar to any user of what now becomes the "classic" edition of HyperOffice-yet far more flexible.

For users ready to migrate online from Microsoft Outlook, SharePoint, Exchange and other conventional, expensive desktop and server email products, HyperOffice provides free support by email and phone, webinars and an array of free, online and custom training options.

Hosted online, the HyperOffice suite delivers to smaller and medium-sized businesses the power and productivity of costly enterprise collaboration software-for a low monthly subscription fee of about $7 per month, per user, secure, and hassle free.

To see a video demo of HyperOffice, go to:

Subscribe to news about HyperOffice at the HyperOffice blog:

Source: HyperOffice

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