Archives for posts with tag: Travis Alber

A good reason to go digital?

Bed Bugs at the NY Public Library

I moved to NYC four months ago, and not a week goes by without a warning about the bed bug epidemic. Beware movie theaters! Avoid used-book stores! Leave abandoned furniture where it lies! I hear all these warnings, and I often think of the library.

I’m a library person. Growing up, I spent rainy Saturdays wandering the poorly lit stacks of vintage sci-fi. I loved it. When I was planning my move, I specifically thought about the New York Public Library. I imagined myself beating the summer heat in a cool corner, flipping though a book I surreptitiously happened upon.

With all the hype, I haven’t visited the library at all. It’s a shame. I’m sure the library is doing everything it can to combat the outbreak. Maybe all my information is hearsay and conjecture. Either way, considering my options has made me aware of one benefit digital books have over their print counterparts: they’re bug-free. (Well, at least the infectious-kind.)

One last note: since I work in the start-up world, I’m obligated to break my moratorium on movie theaters this weekend, in order to see The Social Network (even if I have to stand up the whole time). I’d imagine the library is only a matter of time.

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Great news! BookGlutton has been named a Webby Award Honoree in the Community Category. They tell us out of a whopping 10,000 entries submitted to the 14th Annual Webby Awards, less than 15% are awarded the status of Official Honoree. Entries came from all 50 states and over 60 countries worldwide. It’s a big deal, and we’re humbled by it. Moreover, there are only two book sites listed this year – our partner Goodreads is the only other one we found. Represent!

This isn’t the first time BG has gotten a little Webby Love. In 2008 we were a bona fide finalist in the same Category (Community), against some of the heavyweights that are up there again: Flickr and COLOURlovers. We wrote about it here and here.

What else can we say, except THANK YOU! to our USERS and the folks at the WEBBYS.

Our own Travis Alber, co-founder of BookGlutton.com, had a chance to talk to Kat Meyer for her series The Digitizers. She adds her two cents on the ebook market, digital book design, the epub format and BookGlutton’s plans for the future. Check it out on Teleread!

Both Travis and Aaron sat on the panel of Building a Better Web-Based Book last week at the Tools of Change Conference 2009. It was a great panel, with CJ Rayhill of Safari Books Online, Liza Daly of Threepenny Press, Ben Vershbow of the New York Public Library and Dave Gray of XPLANE. We talked about the social, aesthetic and technical challenges of reading online — Aaron and I were particularly concerned about the fact that books must continue be visually appealing and community-based, even online.

Watch the video here.