There have been a few articles on e-textbooks recently. The Seattlepi reported this week that law schools, book publishers and e-book device makers Amazon and Sony were expected to meet in Seattle yesterday. The focus? e-books for law schools.
The article notes that "A typical law student lugs around 28 pounds of books worth about $1,000 per semester. In creating cutting-edge future lawyers, some legal professors say, paper is a problem." It goes on, "What this workshop will do is bring the reformers of legal academics together -- the most distinguished scholars who have built their reputations on pedagogical reforms." Having discussions about the pedagogical aspects of e-textbooks is a critical step for the eventual adoption of the technology in higher education.
As noted in a follow-up piece that appeared in The Pendulum,
We will be watching for follow-up news and will post links in here when we learn more about anything that came out of the meeting.
The Kindle costs $359 on Amazon.com, which is relative to what a college student may spend on books for one semester. The wireless service is free and allows access to the store, e-mail and Wikipedia.org. The absence of paper will contribute largely to cutting costs. Although the device is pricey, it could save students money in the long run. A better timeline for the possible adoption of this technology by universities may be more apparent after the results of Saturday’s meeting between publishers, device makers and school representatives are announced.