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TVInews - 102 Amazon Offers New Service -- Will sell just a few pages or chapters only, of a book - Photo Image665 / Jeff Bezos Schematic /Google, Yahoo, Smart90 and LookRadio.com also introduce their "Free Plans" - Linux, Sony Corp. and Philips have formed a "Patent Pooling" entity, "The Open Invention Network," -- for sharing Linux patents, royalty-free.
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  1. Feature Story / 46th Week of 2005 / This weeks POWeek, Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon.com, previewed its new service to sell just a few pages or chapters of a book -- allowing one of the world's oldest media to be chopped up and customized like an album on iTunes.
Although he offered few details, Chief Executive Jeff Bezos said Amazon customers soon would be able to buy digital snippets of books for as little as a few cents a page. That might come in handy for tourists planning a trip, chefs seeking recipes or students assigned one chapter in an expensive textbook.
The service could help the Internet retailer emerge as a more publisher-friendly digital library than Google Inc., which Thursday launched a free database of online books. Unlike Google, Amazon plans to offer books only with the blessings of their publishers.
Analysts said Amazon's approach, which builds on a current feature that offers a peek into some books, expanded the online experience and prepared for a day when people were more accustomed to reading long passages of text on the computer.
"It makes it more like browsing in a bookstore," said Think Equity Partners analyst Edward Weller, "and you don't even have to put your clothes on."
John Sargent, CEO of Holtzbrinck Publishers, which includes St. Martin's Press and Farrar, Straus & Giroux, said the success of Apple Computer Inc.'s iTunes Music Store gave him hope that book publishers and authors could find an online business model that gave them a fair share of the proceeds.
"This is a brave new world," he said.
Amazon said it would sell a digital "upgrade" to some books for an additional fee. For example, a computer programmer who buys a software manual would receive the book in the mail but could also read through the digital version online.
"The search engines have been working on book-copying strategies themselves," said Legg Mason analyst Scott Devitt. "This is Amazon showing people it too has a pretty compelling database of book text."
In contrast, Google is scanning vast numbers of books to add to its Google Print search engine -- many without permission from the publishers. Its partners include the University of Michigan, Stanford University, Harvard University, the New York Public Library and Oxford University.
On Thursday, Google opened its digital library with thousands of books that are in the public domain, meaning that they're not under copyright. Users can search for keywords among the pages or read entire books on their computer screens.
"This is a surprising bit of playing by the rules for a company that routinely makes up the rules," said Outsell Inc. analyst Chuck Richard.
On Wednesday, Google said it would resume scanning books, regardless of whether they were covered by copyright. For copyrighted books, Google displays only snippets of pages.
But the fact that it displays ads beside search results infuriates many publishers. Trade groups representing publishers and authors have sued Google for copyright infringement, contending that the Internet firm has no right to scan entire books, even if it doesn't display them in full.
Google contends that the scanning is allowed and that its program can help boost sales by making titles easier to find.

Part 02 / Google Inc. and Yahoo Inc., like Amazon.com, announced this week, that they too, are expanding the content they offer on wireless handsets, a step further in merging their connection between the Web and cellphones.
In the meantime, Linux Backers, Sony Corp. and Philips have joined forces with the two largest Linux software distributors to form a "Patent Pooling" -- to create a company named, "The Open Invention Network," -- for sharing Linux patents, royalty-free.
The Open Invention Network, as the new firm is known, could mark a breakthrough in resolving how to protect vendors and customers from patent royalty disputes resulting from freely shared Linux code.

Google doesn't charge for the service, although data fees may be levied under some carriers' plans.
Google introduced the software users need to search for local businesses and view maps and satellite images on handsets. SBC Communications Inc. said it would introduce a Cingular cellphone that links to Yahoo's content.
The plans highlight the eagerness of Internet and mobile phone companies to attract consumers who want to use their phones to view information while on the move. Yahoo and Google already offer some search services on mobile handsets. Mobile phones outsold personal computers almost 4 to 1 last year, researcher Gartner Inc. said.
Handset sales grew 30%, more than twice as fast as PCs.
Google's new tool, called Google Local for mobile, is available on a test basis, the Mountain View, Calif.-based company said. The service works with certain handsets from Cingular Wireless, Sprint Nextel Corp. and T-Mobile USA Inc.
SBC's device, planned for release next year, will let users access Yahoo services including photos, instant messaging and e-mail, a spokeswoman for San Antonio-based SBC said.
Yahoo's, Sunnyvale, Calif.-based headquarter had no comment on product plans, Although Bloomberg reported that Yahoo Inc. is testing a system that allows companies to purchase Internet ads and pay only when customers dial a telephone number listed in the ad.
Yahoo is conducting testing of so-called pay-per-call technology, a spokeswoman said. The test is being done with Ingenio Inc., a closely held company in San Francisco that already displays ads on Time Warner Inc.'s America Online.
In regards to the Google report to Bloomberg News, "that they will be targeting the online auction market dominated by EBay Inc., with a new patented system that creates Internet ads automatically and makes it easier for people to sell products on the Web, seems to be correct."
The Google Automat will let advertisers enter details of items they want to sell and automatically create an ad under one minute, according to a filing with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.
Mark Soval of LookRadio.com said; "that one of the reasons Smart90, Yes90, and TVInews.net does not charge its users, is because we believe whole heartedly that "free information" access is a form of advertising, and we write it off as such. We are hopefull that over time, the "free access" will morph users into Smart90, TVInews customers with the convnience of llinking a Smart90 page to the customers website."
Soval added, "we follow the lead of all three of these great companies, lending our NBS100, VATs dialtone content. We intend to continue to sell each of their goods, products and services -- anytime they come up with something new."


3. Editor's Note / Valerie McKenzie, 82, was the AP Technician who processed Famous Iwo Jima Flag via IoLL, ( Photoimages over Land Lines) in 1945, died of brain cancer Oct. 31 at Chesapeake Healthcare in Chesapeake, Va.
Unlike today, when newspapers receive photos via computers and satellites, the system at that time was more of a hands-on effort. Technicians in Washington and other major bureaus would receive a negative transmitted by wire, then make prints that would be distributed to newspapers by messenger or mail, said Hal Buell, retired head of photography for AP.
McKenzie, a photo technician for Associated Press for 40 years, was working in the news organization's Washington bureau, during World II when the Iwo Jima picture by Joe Rosenthal arrived. The photo, taken Feb. 23, 1945, earned a Pulitzer Prize and became the model for the Marine Corps War Memorial.
McKenzie began working for the wire service in 1944 and retired in 1988 after assignments in Washington; Newark, N.J.; New York City; and Omaha.

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More Articles • Converging News 462005 / TeleCom BuyOuts, Spinoffs and Asset Seizure Boom

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