Fiction Electronic Books: A Usability Study

  • Chrysanthi Malama
  • Monica Landoni
  • Ruth Wilson
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 3232)


This paper focuses on fiction electronic books and their usability. Two complementary studies were drawn together in order to investigate whether fiction e-books can successfully become part of peoples reading habits: the Visual Book project, which found that electronic texts which closely resemble their paper counterparts in terms of visual components such as size, quality and design were received positively by users, and the EBONI Project which aimed to define a set of best practice guidelines for designing electronic textbooks. It was found that the general guidelines for the design of textbooks on the Internet that have been proposed by the EBONI project can also be applied to the design of fiction e-books. Finally, in terms of the electronic production of fiction e-books, this study suggests that concentrating on the appearance of text, rather than the technology itself, can lead to better quality publications to rival the print version of fiction books.


Usability Study Visual Component Subjective Satisfaction Electronic Book Electronic Text 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Landoni, M.: The Visual Book system: a study of the use of visual rhetoric in the design of electronic books. Glasgow: Department of Information Science, University of Strathclyde, PhD Thesis (1997)Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Wilson, R., Landoni, M., Gibb, F.: The WEB Book experiments in electronic textbook design. Journal of Documentation 59(4) (2003)Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Schcolnik, M.: A study of reading with dedicated e-readers. Unpublished dissertation. Southeastern University, Florida (2001)Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Wilson, R.: Ebook readers in higher education. Educational Technology and Society 6(4) (October 2003)Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Wilson, R., Landoni, M.: Evaluating the usability of portable electronic books. In: 18th ACM Symposium on Applied Computing (SAC 2003), Florida Institute of Technology, USA (2003)Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Catenazzi, N.: A Study into electronic book design and production: Hyper-Book and Hyper-Book Builder. Glasgow: Department of Information Science of the University of Strathclyde, PhD Thesis (1994)Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Landoni, M., Wilson, R., Gibb, F.: From the Visual book to the Web book: the importance of design. The Electronic Library 18(6) (2000)Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Morkes, J. and Nielsen, J. Concise, SCANNABLE, and objective: how to write for the Web (1997), Available
  9. 9.
    Landoni, M., Wilson, R., Gibb, F.: A user-centred approach to e-book design. The Electronic Library 20(4) (2002)Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    McKnight, C., Dillon, A., Richardson, J. (eds.): Hypertext in Context. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge (1991)Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Rao, S.: Electronic books: a review and evaluation. Library Hi Tech. 21(1) (2003)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Chrysanthi Malama
    • 1
  • Monica Landoni
    • 1
  • Ruth Wilson
    • 1
  1. 1.Dept. of Computer and Information SciencesUniversity of StrathclydeUK

Personalised recommendations