Interesting blog entry from Time Magazine's Techland regarding Apple's Education Event in New York tomorrow. It appears Apple is going to jump into the textbook market, through Apps and their iPad. Not only will Apple work with publishers to get textbooks onto iPads, but software may be revealed to allow teachers and instructors the ability to create their own material for classroom use. Teachers will no longer have to reamin tied to a specific textbook for their classes.
Working in a school, I have to say the textbook may be entering its final decade in print form. I do not imagine schools and students continuing to pay $70+ more for a single textbook. At the high school level books are expected to last seven years or more, and quickly become outdated. At the college level, students buy books, only to re-sell them for half of the original value (if they are lucky). The eBook may save students and schools millions in the near future.
So, how many of you have remember using an old style, card catalog? You know, you want to find a book in your local library, so you pull out the long drawers flipping through cards. Well those days are long gone of course (thankfully) and nearly all libraries use an electronic catalog system to keep track of their collections. Many of the school districts in Wayne County are using a system developed by Follett . It is a great system for school age children and prepares them for many of the advanced catalogs available in public and university libraries. Catalog software is quite expensive and really impractical for home libraries. Some book lovers may create their own spreadsheet or database to keep track of their books, however there is a great (free) tool online to not only catalog your books, but also meet and communicate with other book lovers online. The site librarything.com is a wonderful site that lets you catalog your own home library. Think of it as a "Facebook