2010-12-10

Celsius 211, e-books Arrive at the New Brunswick Library

411 degrees Fahrenheit is the temperature at witch books burn
according to Ray Bradburry's Fahrenheit 411. Yet, here in New
Brunswick, although the provincially run library system is presumably
buying fewer inflammable books, the money isn't being diverted away to
mind controlling television (there is no equivalent to TV Ontario or
Télé-Quebec out here, although cable subscribers have access to both).

No, money is being diverted to ebooks that, ironically for Ray
Bradbury fans, can be read on a wall (aka gigantic TV connected to a
computer).

Despite being behind the innovation curb, Ottawa and Calgary, for
example, have had e-libraries for a while, I'm not sure the library is
quite ready for the masses. There are plenty of compatibility issues
and selection is quite limited, especially in French (a third of New
Brunswick's 750,000 people are French speaking).

But for Anglos that are computer savvy, even in this paper producing
province, the NB e-library makes a lot of sense. This is still, after
all, a rural province where 1 in 2 live in a rural area, far from any
library with much selection. As any citizen in New Brunswick can
request that a physical, burnable book, be shipped to their local
branch (from an other branch), there should be some fuel savings (take
that Alberta).

(Screen capture of my first e-Library book)

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