Nov 14, 2015

Random Articles - RAW 151114


Welcome to the weekend, I've added a few extra articles this week so that you can read them while they're still relevant.  Pull up a a comfy chair and your favourite beverage and start your weekend off well informed about the latest developments in space, Sci-Fi and books. I'm currently enjoying a flat white while putting this together.  What will you be having? 


Books And Things:


  • Waterstones reveals 'richly diverse' Book of the Year shortlist
  • The Atlantic: Amazon Just Replaced the Public Library
  • BookTech Awards Showcase: ooovre
  • Cracking e-book DRM still forbidden as Librarian of Congress announces DMCA exemption decisions
  • J.K. Rowling Confirms She is Writing a New Children’s Book
  • Kobo Pulls a Bait & Switch


Space, The Final Frontier:


  • Closest Earth-size Alien Planet Found, May Be a Venus Twin
  • Alien Megastructure Mystery May Soon Be Solved
  • Sorry, Alien Hunters: No Signs Of Life From KIC 8462852


Sci-Fi Stuff:


  • J.J. Abrams, Star Wars Superfan, on Directing The Force Awakens




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 Waterstones reveals 'richly diverse' Book of the Year shortlist

thebookseller.com - The shortlist for the Waterstones Book of the Year 2015 has been revealed, featuring a list that would  "not have been produced by an algorithm,” the chain's m.d. James Daunt has said. The eight-strong selection nominated by Waterstones booksellers across the UK encompasses four novels, three non-fiction titles and one children’s book - the shortlist has been expanded from six to eight titles this year to encompass the "strength of publishing" 

The Atlantic: Amazon Just Replaced the Public Library

the-digital-reader.com - When a news organization has to cover an important story like Amazon's new bookstore, they can usually either find an expert to write the article, or just have a staff writer do it. Or they can take The Atlantic's approach, and find someone who has never ever visited either a bookstore or a library and have that person write the story. 

BookTech Awards Showcase: ooovre

thebookseller.com - "We definitely want to support local bookshops, we all love what they do.  But we also want to use digital technology to develop a better way of buying books that combines online and offline." In short, the latest oddly named startup to capture a spot in our BookTech competition, ooovre (three o's, and lowercased) is meant to help bookshops do what many of them don't want to do: thrive in cyberspace. There's solace here. 

Cracking e-book DRM still forbidden as Librarian of Congress announces DMCA exemption decisions

teleread.com - The DMCA exemption rulemaking process proceeds apace. The Register of Copyrights released a set of recommendations (PDF) covering the proposed exemptions it received last year, and then the Librarian of Congress considered those recommendations and released his decision (PDF). The approved exemptions won’t take effect for another year, to allow regulatory agencies time to get ready for the change. 

J.K. Rowling Confirms She is Writing a New Children’s Book

goodereader.com - Author J.K. Rowling has confirmed that she is working on her first children’s book since Harry Potter.  This is a stark departure from the novels she has written in the last five years that have primarily been aimed at adults. “I have an idea for a children’s book, which I really love – I’ve been writing part of a children’s book so I’m going to finish that – and I have ideas for other adult books.” Speaking about her Cormoran Strike series of novels, which she penned under the name Robert Galbraith, Rowling added: “What’s nice about the Strike books is I don’t have an end point. I’m not as prescriptive as with the Potter books.” 

Kobo Pulls a Bait & Switch

the-digital-reader.com - When Kobo launched a three-day sale on the Kobo Mini last week, they raised hopes that Kobo would be bringing back the beloved 5" ereader. Now that order are arriving, it's safe to say that ain't gonna happen. 


Closest Earth-size Alien Planet Found, May Be a Venus Twin

space.com - A newly discovered planet 39 light-years away is being called the closest Earth-size exoplanet ever discovered — and a potential "Venus twin" — providing the mouth-watering opportunity for a close-up look at the environment on a rocky alien world.  Read more...

Alien Megastructure’ Mystery May Soon Be Solved

hiduth.com -The mystery behind a strangely dimming star could soon be solved. Astronomers around the world are keeping a close eye on the star KIC 8462852, which has dimmed dramatically numerous times over the past few years, dropping in brightness by up to 22 percent. These big dips have spurred speculation that the star may be surrounded by some type of alien megastructure — a hypothesis that will be put to the test if and when KIC 8462852 dims again. 

Sorry, Alien Hunters: No Signs Of Life From KIC 8462852

gizmodo.com - A few weeks back, the humans of planet Earth worked themselves into a frenzy over the possibility that the Kepler space telescope had discovered an alien megastructure. Since then, the astronomers behind the hubbub have had their heads down, hunting for the technobabble that might lend credence to the wild theory. Surprise! They haven’t found it. 


J.J. Abrams, Star Wars Superfan, on Directing The Force Awakens

wired.com - Sure, this won’t be the first time Abrams resurrects a beloved Enterprise. But … this is the saga. It’s one of the things that invented modern superfandom. And this is no reboot. With The Force Awakens, Abrams is marshaling the same actors, writers, designers, and even the same composer to reanimate the char­acters and themes that made the original Star Wars into, well, Star Wars. He loves those movies as much as you or any of your laser-brained friends do. But when he first met those movies he was just an apprentice. Now he must become the master. 



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