A talk on Exploiting The E-Book was given at the Techshare 2001 Conference which was held at Jury's Inn, Birmingham on 27-28th November 2001.
Providing information in a digital format provides many advantages for the visually impaired and those with other disabilities. The advent of the World Wide Web provided a consistent and easy-to-use interface to a wide range of services. However access was typically only available from a desktop PC. This may be fine for those who have access to networked PC in their place of work, but provides a barrier for those without access to a networked PC and many home users.
The E-Book device appears to promise access to digital resources using a cheap, lightweight and portable device. This sounds ideal for many disabled users. But, unfortunately, there is much confusion over the term "e-Book" - does it refer to a portable device or access to a book-like resource on the Web. There are also issues for providers of e-Book resources - which of the many different e-Book formats should they use. Providers of information should also aim to avoid the management nightmare of having to develop and maintain multiple versions of resources and should consider the most effective models for ensuring that information is suitable for reuse.
The talk will provide a context for the e-Book reader and compare it will other new digital devices such as the WAP phone and the PDA. A summary of issues in the e-Book community will be given and examples of approaches to providing information in a format suitable for access on an e-Book reader will be provided.
The objectives of the presentation are to inform the audience of developments in the area of e-Books.
At the end of the talk the audience should be aware of the developments in the area of e-Books and be better informed of the approaches they should take if they wish to publish information in an e-Book format.