The Future is here

The future of the lending library is here, in The New York Public Library. Any of its members can check out a virtual book, an electronic book, online, on the Internet, from its virtual library. In fact The Library of Congress has been making electronic versions of its stock of books for 10 years now. However distributing such books is another thing. It never caught on with the American public – until now, with The New York Public Library. In an episode in BBC’s Clickonline television programme recently, the Library revealed that its online library in 2005 had more visitors than its other physical ones – 20 million, 5 million more than actual members at its physical libraries. It seems that these visitors are mostly young people and those who own devices which can also read ebooks, like PDAs, cell or mobile phones and tablet PCs.

How the lending out of ebooks works is by issuing ebooks in either Adobe Reader or MobiPocket formats. The countdown of the number of days an ebook can remain readable in a PC or gadget begins the day it is checked out. After 21 days or 3 weeks the ebook locks itself, preventing further access. And during that time the borrower cannot send it to another person to read on his PC, because it won’t recognize his PC as the legit borrower.


  1. bibliobibuli says

    love it, leon! but haven't yet got my head around the technology!

    Leon Wing says

    Hope you will, soon, when you acquire your own PDA.

    Chet says

    Interesting that the library did not choose either the Micrsoft Reader format or eReader. Adobe Reader works great on a regular desktop, but I don't like the Palm version.

    What ebook reader do you use, Leon?

    Leon Wing says

    I can read Adobe Reader books on my Ipaq but I don't like the huge space each book takes up in my card. I much prefer the smaller MS Reader books. I think the NY Lib uses Adobe for the DRM security, tho MS Reader also can have this.

    dreamer idiot says

    Hi...I guess you won't remember me, but I remember you commenting that you are interested in having a poetry blog. Well, I feel the same way too, and hope that we could have a blog for Malaysian poetry lovers.

    Here's my lame attempt of 'starting ' one

    I don't know if this thing can be pulled off, but I guess it's worth a try anyway...

    bibliobibuli says

    leon where are you?????? no blogging for an age

    Leon Wing says

    Hi Sharon, Glad you're back. Was it strange not seeing double deckers on London streets any more?

    I have been very, very busy with work this last couple of weeks. I really envy writers who can juggle their schedule. I have to learn how to. Look what's happening to me - no poems or any shorts for ages.

    bibliobibuli says

    there are double deckers, leon - just not the old routemaster buses ...

    sad to hear how busy you've been but get out from under soon! happy chinese new year!!!

    Chet says

    No shorts, Leon?

    Ooo ...

    Leon Wing says

    Sorry Chet, none ... yet.

Post a Comment

Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.