Listen to a good radio panel on the future of the book

I really enjoyed this panel discussion on the future of the book on American University Radio. The panellists are top flight, helped by informed questioning by host Kojo Nnamdi.

  • Rob Pegoraro, Personal Technology Columnist, Washington Post
  • Bob Stein, Founder and Co-Director, Institute for the Future of the Book – also a keynote speaker at the recent Tools of Change conference
  • Dean Hubbard, President, Northwest Missouri State University

A couple of interesting things that caught my ear among the many things discussed:

  • One of the panellists played a brief demo of the text-to-speech feature of the Kindle 2 – the feature that’s been causing so much controversy over audio rights. While just a brief snippet, I was impressed by just how good it is, although as the panellist pointed out, it’s still not perfect and misses many words including “Obama”.
  • Dean Hubbard had a lot to say about the use of ebooks in universities. They’re doing some significant things in this field, a pointer to how students will access many of their text and reading resources.

It’s a fairly long show but if you have a spare hour, take a listen (only streaming audio by the look of it, I couldn’t see a link to a podcast).

Thanks to Teleread for spotting this one.

[UPDATE: I’ve just searched the internet and found this MobileTechReview video review of the Kindle 2 which also includes the text-to-speech feature, demonstrating it with both the male and female voices.

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