Kimberly K. Obbink <email@example.com>
Nels D. Sanddal <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Mr. Myron Nordquist <email@example.com>
Ben I. Haraguchi <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Kenneth O. Roko <KenRoko@aol.com>
Dena S. Puskin <email@example.com>
Mr. John D. Negroponte <firstname.lastname@example.org>
(1) Many thanks for your msg (ATTACHMENT I).
(2) Nels must be back from his trip to India by now.
My overseas trips have been postponed.
(3) After Ben, Ken and I had a very fruitful
mtg with Dena and her
colleagues in the am of 3/3rd, we had a very interesting conversation
during our lunch time with Myron and Mr. Negroponte (a former Ambassador
to the Philippines) at Cosmos Club in D.C.
(4) Yesterday, I talked with Myron over the phone about our next steps.
Ben is now drafting a
letter which Myron will send to Mr. Negroponte who
told us that he would arrange a mtg with his staff at McGraw-Hill in
New York on the following:
of their McGraw-Hill University project with
digitization of about 25 textbooks so far, -- for possible
collaboration with our Global University System project;
of their e-book (ATTACHMENT II) project -- for test
use at your BTC and in Manila;
(c) Further discussion
on Mr. Negroponte's help for our project with
the University of Philippines/Open University in Manila.
(5) Myron wants to attend the mtg with Dena
by himself or with other staff of
Senator Burns' office, also.
Myron also wants to arrange
a mtg with Mr. Negroponte for our mtg with
McGraw-Hill staff, and he wants you to attend it also after our mtg with Dena in D.C.
Myron also wants me to
arrange mtgs with others while you and Myron are
in New York -- they would be with the Phelps-Stokes Fund, Sloan Foundation,
Ford Foundation, etc.
Therefore, pls let me
know when you have set our mtg with Dena at your
(6) As mentioned in my previous msg, I would
suggest that we should have a
strategic mtg at Senator Burns' office in the am and the mtg with Dena in the pm.
From: "Obbink, Kim" <email@example.com>
To: "'firstname.lastname@example.org'" <email@example.com>
Cc: "'KenRoko@aol.com'" <KenRoko@aol.com>,
Subject: meeting schedule
Date: Fri, 10 Mar 2000 15:18:42 -0700
I have been in touch with Ken Roko. Given Nels travel schedule (he does not
return from India until March 20th) and other commitments we do not yet feel
prepared to present our concept to Dena during the week of the 20th.
We will plan to meet with her the last week of
March or early April, and
then have a follow-up meeting with Dena and yourself when you return.
I think that an extra week of planning will help
us insure success in our
discussion with Dena.
Best wishes for your upcoming travels.
Return to Global University System Early 2000 Correspondence
BUSINESSWEEK ONLINE: MARCH 27, 2000 ISSUE
[Technology & You]
A New Chapter for E-Books
What comes first--the product or the market? In
high tech, it's often the
product, and building a market for something that people don't yet know they
need can be arduous. That is the case with electronic-book readers, which
launched with great fanfare more than a year ago, but have enjoyed at best
modest success. Things may be about to change, a result more of business
developments than new technology.
E-books, devices that can electronically store
and display books, have to
solve a three-cornered problem to succeed. Consumers won't buy the reader
devices in large numbers unless they are cheap and there's plenty of content
available. Current e-book readers cost $200 to $600, and that's with
monochrome screens, not the color needed for high-quality text. To drive costs
down, makers need to sell millions of units, not thousands. And publishers
want the incentive of a mass market to make books available electronically.
PRICEY TITLES. One factor that may get the market
moving is the bulking up of
e-book makers. SoftBook Press and NuvoMedia, makers of the SoftBook Reader and
Rocket eBook readers, have been acquired by Gemstar International Group, owner
of TV Guide, the VCR Plus+ recording system, and online TV listings. Gemstar
plans to relaunch the paperback-size Rocket eBook and the larger SoftBook with
a marketing campaign that their startup owners could not afford.
A big marketing campaign may help convince publishers
that the e-book market
is worth paying attention to. While there are lots of classics available in
electronic form, current titles are sparse. Just as bad, publishers are not
pricing e-books so they can jump-start the market. For example, bn.com charges
$19.96 for a Rocket eBook version of Tom Brokaw's The Greatest Generation from
Random House--$7.50 more than the same title in hardcover. Since I, like most
people, would rather have the printed book, such pricing is a problem for the
There are signs that things may be loosening up
a bit. Single-function readers
like Rocket eBook aren't the only way to get e-books. Microsoft (MSFT) is
about to ship its first products using a technology called ClearType, which
dramatically improves the quality of text on a color LCD display. Not only do
the characters look much better, but ClearType fixes the erratic spacing
between letters and lines that makes electronic displays hard to read.
Microsoft Reader, a ClearType-based electronic-book program, will appear on a
new breed of Palm-size Pocket PCs in April. I've been playing with a
prototype, and while the display--15 lines of about 6 words each--is small for
serious reading, the quality of the type approaches print on paper. The
technology will also be made available for laptops and, perhaps, on a new line
of more booklike electronic tablets.
Publishers like the looks of ClearType but are
worried that Microsoft has paid
too little attention to preventing piracy of downloaded books. That's the
problem Adobe Systems has tackled with PDF Merchant, designed to facilitate
the sale of e-books while blocking unauthorized duplication. You can see a
demonstration of the software in action by downloading a free Glassbook Reader
Unfortunately, Adobe's Acrobat technology works
much better for high-quality
printing of electronic text than reading it on-screen. Combining Microsoft's
display technology with Adobe's rights management seems a natural. But the two
companies don't get along very well, so don't hold your breath.
We can only hope that a marketing campaign will
sell more readers on e-books
and that, in turn, will persuade publishers to offer more titles at lower
prices. There are some encouraging signs. Simon & Schuster, for one, will sell
a new Stephen King short story exclusively in electronic form, for $2.50.
For now, the readers are useful mainly for periodicals,
reference works, and self-published texts distributed through channels such as
NuvoMedia's Rocket Library or Fatbrain.com's eMatter. Electronic textbooks,
however, are waiting in the wings. Sales of e-book readers in various forms
seem poised for at least a modest pickup, and that may be all it takes to
interest publishers enough to make e-books a real alternative to paper.
Questions? Comments? E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or fax 202) 383-2125
By STEPHEN H. WILDSTROM
TABLE: Building a Market
The hardware The most prominent contenders, SoftBook
Readers and Rocket eBook,
have been purchased by Gemstar International Group, which has the resources to
promote them widely
The software Microsoft is ready to introduce ClearType,
improves the appearance of text and can be used on laptops and other devices,
as well as e-books. Adobe Systems has developed software to thwart piracy
The content Prices are still relatively high for
books that can be downloaded,
but wider distribution of hardware and better software may make the market
more inviting for publishers
Copyright 2000 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
All rights reserved.
Return to Global University System Early 2000 Correspondence
List of Distribution
Kimberly K. Obbink
Burns Telecommunications Center and Extended Studies
128 EPS Building,
Montana State University
Bozeman, MT 59717-3860
Tel: +1-406-994 6550
Fax: +1-406-994 7856
Nels D. Sanddal
President & CEO
Critical Illness and Trauma Foundation
300 North Willson Avenue, Suite 3002
Bozeman, MT 59715
Tel: +1-406-585 2659
Fax: +1-406-585 2741
Mr. Myron Nordquist
U.S. Senator Conrad Burns' Office
187 Dirksen Senate Building
Washington, D.C. 20510-2603
804-924-7573 -- at the U. of VA.
Fax: 804-982-2622 -- at the U. of VA.
Ben I. Haraguchi
Foundation for the Support of the United Nations (FSUN)
809 United Nations Plaza, Suite 1200
New York, NY 10017
Tel: +1-212-986 8114
Fax: +1-212-986 8131
Kenneth O. Roko
Next Generation Networks Technology, Inc.
8218 Running Creek Ct
Springfield, VA 22153-4610
Dena S. Puskin, Sc.D.
Director, Office for the Advancement of Telehealth
Deputy Director, US Public Health Service
Office of Rural Health Policy, Room 11A55
Health Resources and Services Adiministration
U.S. Department of Health & Human Services
5600 Fishers Lane
Rockville, MD 20857
Tel: 1 301 443 0447
Fax: 1 301 443 1330
Mr. John D. Negroponte
Executive Vice President
The McGraw-Hill Companies
1221 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10020-1095
* Takeshi Utsumi, Ph.D., P.E., Chairman, GLOSAS/USA *
* (GLObal Systems Analysis and Simulation Association in the U.S.A.) *
* Laureate of Lord Perry Award for Excellence in Distance Education *
* Founder of CAADE *
* (Consortium for Affordable and Accessible Distance Education) *
* President Emeritus and V.P. for Technology and Coordination of *
* Global University System (GUS) *
* 43-23 Colden Street, Flushing, NY 11355-3998, U.S.A. *
* Tel: 718-939-0928; Fax: 718-939-0656 (day time only--prefer email) *
* Email: email@example.com; Tax Exempt ID: 11-2999676 *
* http://www.friends-partners.org/GLOSAS/ *
Return to: Global University System
Early 2000 Correspondence
Web page by Steve McCarty, World Association for Online Education President