Assessing Open Source Journal Management Software

The long-term sustainability of Open Source (OS) software depends on its community of developers and core users, as well as that community’s stability. Assessing OS software and the community which creates it is, therefore, an essential step in using OS software for a project. In this study, surveys of OS journal management systems were reviewed to determine which were still actively maintained. Actively maintained systems were rated using QualiPSo’s Open Maturity Model (OMM), an assessment tool for determining the maturity and robustness of OS software. Of the OS journal management systems mentioned in existing surveys, only Ambra, Lodel, and Open Journal Systems (OJS) are still actively maintained. Of these, OJS scored the highest OMM rating, followed by Ambra and Lodel. A new system, Janeway, was also assessed. Although OS software can carry risks, it also brings benefits to librarians, readers, and publishers of scholarly journals. Assessing OS software and getting involved in OS software communities both help ensure the long-term survival of these communities and their work.

Keywords: Open Access publishing; Open Source software; software assessment

Author bio: Stewart C. Baker is the Systems and Institutional Repository Librarian at Western Oregon University. His interests are Open Source and Open Access, web design, emerging technologies, and how libraries are adapting to the changing information landscape. Stewart is also a published haiku poet and author of speculative fiction.

Rediscovering an Old Genre: Open Textbook Publishing and University Presses

Rediscovering an Old Genre: Open Textbook Publishing and University PressesAnnie JohnsonTemple Universityannie.johnson@temple.eduMost discussions about university presses focus on presses as monograph publishers. This article examines university presses as textbook publishers, and argues that presses could potentially play an important role in supporting the proliferation of open textbooks. I begin by tracing the long history of university presses’ involvement in textbook publishing, and more recently, presses’ involvement in open textbook publishing. I describe the different types of presses that are interested in open textbook publishing, and then attempt to classify the open textbooks that are currently being published by university presses.

Episodic Listening: Analyzing the Content and Usage of Born-Audio Serial Narratives

Following a ‘boom’ in audiobook consumption, recent years have seen the emergence of born-audio literature: narratives written specifically for the audiobook format. The article focuses on the content and usage of born-audio serial narratives produced by the Swedish audiobook subscription service, Storytel. As these so-called Storytel Originals are produced specifically for the audiobook format, they make a good case for studying how the format influences the narrative content as well as the usage of literary texts. The serial publishing format becomes especially relevant within the subscription-based context because it, ideally, encourages users’ long-term commitment to the story – and to the service. Accordingly, it becomes relevant to investigate how Storytel uses the serial narrative format to attract and maintain the users’ attention. By combining literary analyses of selected Originals stories with quantitative analyses of statistical data on listening behaviour in relation to these series, we examine the connection between the narrative content of series in different genres and the users’ loyalty towards the series. Thus, we focus on the following research questions: How does the born-audio serial format shape the narrative content and usage of the Originals series, and to what extent does it promote user loyalty?

Keyworks: digital audiobooks, seriality, listening patterns, new forms of reading, born-audio fiction.

On Arabic Justification

Justified setting is one of the most common configurations of a block of text. It is found across different cultures, writing systems, and languages. Yet whilst the concept of equalising the width of lines in a column to achieve a rectangular block is shared, the techniques that are employed towards this end are diverse. This paper discusses the justification of Arabic text. It lays out the methods that evolved in manuscript practice and reflects on their interpretation in typography. It casts a spotlight on the origins of the typographic justification techniques in Europe and compares them in three case studies to examples from the nineteenth century Middle East. A sketch contextualises how Arabic justification changed under the influence of technology and prepares the ground for a review of the provisions found in current typographic environments. The paper then presents the state-of-the-art of digital text layout for Arabic and queries its suitability. The argument concludes with recommendations of best practice aimed at toolmakers and designers of Arabic documents.

How to Choose a Format: Consumers’ Evaluation in Choosing a Format for Reading Books in Norway

This article contributes to the discussion of digital versus physical books and sharpens focus on the consumers of books. Using mixed methods, the article explores the emotional relationship between books, information and technology and provides new insight into the importance of habits, the impact of books as symbols of status, format choice and technology acceptance. The study looks at what are determining factors when choosing a format for reading, and how e-books and physical books compare to each other. Respondents report that their ability to relax with the book is reduced when reading an e-book and that the joy and comfort of reading a book are diminished when reading on a screen. The results confirm and extend previous research in this area and suggest that emotional value should be included in technology acceptance studies for digital reading.
Keywords: Physical books, e-books, adoption, technology acceptance, Digital products, mixed methods.

The Open-Factor: Toward Impact-Aligned Measures of Open-Access eBook Usage

A statistical analysis of usage data for open-access ebooks from two different publishers and from a free ebook distribution platform indicates that open-access ebook usage is distributed following log-normal statistics, and meaningful analysis results after calculating the logarithm of the download counts. To assess usage impact from raw usage data in alignment with the goals of open-access ebook publishing, future impact analyses should use logarithm-based metrics to measure an “open-factor”.

Determinants of Article Processing Charges for Medical Open Access Journals

For-profit subscription journal publishers recently have extended their publishing range from subscription journals to numerous open access journals, thereby strengthening their presence in the open access journal market. This study estimates the article processing charges for 509 medical open access journals using a sample selection model to examine the determinants of the charges. The results show that publisher type tends to determine whether the journal charges an article processing charge as well as the level of the charge; and frequently cited journals generally set higher article processing charges. Moreover, large subscription journal publishers tend to set higher article processing charges for their open access journals after controlling for other factors. Therefore, it is necessary to continue monitoring their activities from the viewpoint of competition policy.
Keywords: Open access journal, Article processing charge, Sample selection model, Publisher

The Cornwall a-book: An Augmented Travel Guide Using Next Generation Paper

Electronic publishing usually presents readers with book or e-book options for reading on paper or screen. In this paper, we introduce a third method of reading on paper-and-screen through the use of an augmented book (‘a-book’) with printed hotlinks than can be viewed on a nearby smartphone or other device. Two experimental versions of an augmented guide to Cornwall are shown using either optically recognised pages or embedded electronics making the book sensitive to light and touch. We refer to these as second generation (2G) and third generation (3G) paper respectively. A common architectural framework, authoring workflow and interaction model is used for both technologies, enabling the creation of two future generations of augmented books with interactive features and content. In the travel domain we use these features creatively to illustrate the printed book with local multimedia and updatable web media, to point to the printed pages from the digital content, and to record personal and web media into the book.KEYWORDSAuthor KeywordsAugmented books, a-books, augmented travel guide, 2G paper, 3G paper, optical page recognition, printed and embedded electronics