Hello all. I think I actually beat Shelley on posting a news article for a change. Anyway, congratulations to the many volunteers. It's good to see that bookshare is getting good publicity. Maybe they'll get more members.
Townonline.com (Massachusetts) Thursday, February 03, 2005
Web site of the week: www.bookshare.org
"Bookshare.org, a group that collects digital books for the visually impaired, has announced that its online collection is up to over 20,000 titles. The site is available at http://www.bookshare.org .
Among the materials available here are Newberry award winners from 1922 to 2004, lots of different categories, and teacher recommendations. Pick a category or do a keyword search to get a list of titles that includes a summary of the book, the transcription quality (all the ones I saw were "excellent - almost no errors"), the copyright date, and the available formats.
There are two kinds of books here. There are the ones which are out of copyright and are available to anyone for download. Then there are the ones which are still under copyright. To download the books which are still under copyright you'll need to be a member. To be a member you'll need to pay a small membership fee ($25 to sign up, $50 for the annual subscription) and provide proof that you have a "print disability" that prevents you from reading print books (see http://www.bookshare.org/web/AboutDisabilities.html for information about that.) I took a look at a couple of out-of-copyright books, including a couple of Zane Grey westerns. The book was available in four different formats: DAISY Digital Talking Book Format, BRF Braille Digital Format, ASCII text (plain text), and HTML. The downloads which do not require membership don't require any kind of registration at all to download."
This week's site description is reproduced with permission of Tara Calishain who writes the weekly newsletter, ResearchBuzz which can be found at www.researchbuzz.com.