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Archive for ‘Reading’

New E-Reader Planned

Thus far I’ve successfully resisted the charms of Kindles 1 and 2, such as they are, and of the Sony Reader as well. Though I’m someone who reads a whole lot of text on a screen, I’m still a committed bookist when it comes to, well, books.

It is possible that the promised Eee Reader from Asus might be a game changer for me. For one thing, as with the netbook that the Taiwan company launched, this device would be cheap — perhaps $200, according to reports. Then, as you can see from the image, which is an imagined . . . [more]

Posted in: Reading, Technology

Google’s Settlement With AAP and the Authors Guild

Sept. 4 is the deadline for submissions to the United States District Court – Southern District of New York regarding “Google Book Search,” as the proposed settlement has come to be known.

In a court order of April 28 (via Wired), the judge agreed that it was prudent to allow additional time for stakeholders to assess the agreement. Pamela Samuelson was the lead author requesting the extension, and has written a wonderfully lucid account, not only of the shortcomings of the agreement, but also succinctly identifying the motivations of the parties in fashioning it.

Her short article appears in . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Legal Information: Publishing, Reading, Substantive Law, Technology: Internet

Flat World Texts: Sort of Free, Sort of Good, Sort of in Your Future

New York Times columnist Thomas L. Friedman declared in his book that “The World is Flat,” by which he meant that globalization had levelled the playing field so that all countries might now compete on more or less the same terms. Since its first publication four years ago, technological changes have only made the world flatter yet, as anyone who has taken a look at legal outsourcing to offshore jurisdictions must realize.

Flat World Knowledge, a publisher of texts, wants us to see how technology can make books more readily and cheaply available to college and university . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training, Legal Information, Legal Information: Publishing, Reading

The Full Stop in Legal Citation – Has Its Time Finally Come?

Canadian law report citations are riddled with “full stops”, more commonly referred to as “periods”, all of which are completely unnecessary. Needless to say, there are crusaders amongst us who would do away with them altogether, sooner rather than later.

I will admit to having been the unwitting source of a number of the offending citations. In the development of Carswell’s series of topical law reports, an official citation was required for each of them. By tradition, it is the publisher who determines what the citation shall be and how it is to be styled. That task fell to me. . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Legal Information: Publishing, Reading

Zen and the Art of Legal Research and Texts

I made a comment some time ago on a posting originally made by Ted Tjaden on the nature of legal research. I was very busy at the time and did not take the time I should have to make myself clear. Now that Simon F’s piece on “Tomorrow’s Texts” and the comments on it are open for discussion, they offer me an opportunity to elaborate.

I suggest that, in responding to what Ted said and Simon’s topic, we consider the purpose expressed by Robert Pirsig in “Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance”, viz., an inquiry into “quality” and . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Legal Information: Publishing, Reading

Online Rebranding – Too Important to Be Left to the Professionals

Recent announcements timed for the annual meeting of the Canadian Association of Law Libraries included the usual update from the major publishers on recently rebranded businesses and products.

This time, Thomson Carswell became “Carswell, a Thomson Reuters Business” and “Westlaw-ecarswell” became “WestlawCanada”. Both name changes are undoubted improvements over what was there before and make sense in the long term, but they are really just the latest in a long series of changes that have taken place since The Carswell Company was acquired by the The Thomson Corporation. On the plus side, the print products continue to be associated . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Legal Information: Publishing, Reading

A Great Bargain on Summer Reading: Special 20% Discount on ABA Titles

For a limited time, ABA Publishing is offering a special 20% discount on all ABA titles. Do your shopping before July 24, 2009 as this offer expires on that date. To get this special pricing order online and enter source code PEP9MJPM

The 20% discount applies to all ABA books and you can find a complete listing of them at Non-ABA members get 20% off of list price. ABA Section members get 20% off the special reduced member price of any section they belong to, and 20% off the list price for books from sections they aren’t members . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: CLE/PD, Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Marketing, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Reading, Technology

Oxford Law Dictionary Now for iPhone

White Park Bay, a company that seems to specialize in porting Oxford University Press books to the iPhone, has published a number of OUPs technical dictionaries as iPhone apps, among them the Oxford Dictionary of Law. (This link will take you to it in the app store on your iTunes.) The dictionary sells for CD14.99 (who’s kidding whom with this penny less pricing?). You will note that while rich for an iTunes app, many of which sell at just under a dollar, it’s a whole lot cheaper than the Black’s Law Dictionary, which sells for CD50 (with a penny . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training, Legal Information, Legal Information: Publishing, Reading, Technology

Librarians to the Rescue

US Christians concerned to suppress the civil liberties of others are agitating in Wisconsin to burn a novel that is sympathetic to the plight of young homosexuals. Salon has a good summary of the story, including some recognition for the librarians involved. Others are also covering it. In this case, the librarians are supported by their community, which is always crucial for the profession, which is undervalued on a gender basis and saddled with disempowering stereotypes (which are nevertheless sometimes fun). . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Reading, Substantive Law

Google Books Improves

Google Books has released a number of improvements designed to make reading and sharing their material easier. The Books blog, Inside Google Book Search lists seven changes:

  1. embedding and links – From the new toolbar on a Books page you can copy a link to the source or the html necessary to produce an iframe in your blog or web page that will embed the source.
  2. improved search – There’s now more context around your search terms, and you can rank your search results by relevance as well as page order.
  3. thumbnail view – More useful, perhaps, where images are
. . . [more]
Posted in: Reading, Technology: Internet

Digital Humanities Summer Institute

I’ve been attending classes this week at the University of Victoria’s DHSI. From the website:

The Digital Humanities Summer Institute provides an environment ideal to discuss, to learn about, and to advance skills in new computing technologies influencing the work of those in the Arts, Humanities and Library communities.

Perhaps the only institute of its kind, attendees come from all over the world (in my class there are people from Europe, the US, and Thailand as well as Canadians from all parts). We have grad students, professors and librarians.

To get an idea of the content, have a look . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Reading, Technology

Phillipine Customs Breaking New Ground in Educational Theory

The Florence Agreement of 1950 attempts to stem restrictions on the circulation of knowledge via books. In the Philippines, the government has recently given to the world a new understanding of the scope of the agreement, based on a more critical reading of the text. According to the Customs Undersecretary, the Agreement only applies to educational books, and, no surprise here, Customs is the body best able to make that determination. Perhaps they are well versed in the field. There seems to have been some interesting work done ((Such as HARSKAMP, E. and SUHRE, C. (1992). ‘Psychometrische kwaliteiten van meetinstrumenten . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Reading