Govt Launches eBasta, A Digital Library Of Downloadable School Books, Yet Another Digital India Initiative
The Digital India initiative is spreading it’s wings in every area possible. Over last few months there have been many initiatives launched under this scheme, but most of them have been geared towards transparent Governance and other Government related services.
Now, under Digital India initiative, the Government has launched a platform that extends may help Indian school students tremendously. Aptly called eBasta (Basta means school bag in Hindi), this new platform was unveiled today by the Government that will provide digital and eBook versions of school books and other study material to school students through-out India.
The platform, eBasta, is merely not a library of books, but a collaborative platform where school Book publishers, School teachers, students and even various etailers can participate.
According to the eBasta website, “it is a framework to make school books accessible in digital form as e-books to be read and used on tablets and laptops. The main idea is to bring various publishers (free as well as commercial) and schools together on one platform. In addition to the portal, a back-end framework to facilitate the organization and easy management of such resources has also been made, along with the web based applications that can be installed on tablets for navigating the framework.”
What Can School / Teachers Do with eBasta?
The school or teachers can log on to the portal and search for eBooks and other digital content. They can then logically organize it by creating eBasta for their own students. It’s exactly like you create a bag full of schools books that are related to each standard or course.
School teachers can choose and bundle content according to their teaching methods. Access to variety of resources – text, simulation, animations, audio books, videos, etc – to choose from.
What Can Students Do with eBasta?
eBasta provides an Android Application download, which students can install on their mobile phones or tablets. The students can then go to eBasta and download the eBasta that has been created by their school or teachers. This way, the students will have all the content as required by their teachers.
Because the content is in digital format, it can be stored on any device and shared or copied making the entire content very accessible and portable for students to use.
What Can Publishers Do with eBasta?
For school book publishers, eBasta becomes a marketplace where they can read out to thousands of schools across the country. They can register on the portal and then list, sell and distribute all their content in digital format.
Apart from listing and showcasing their content, the publishers can get direct feedback from teachers and students regarding the digital content they offer. The platform also supports DRM, so they do not have to worry about piracy of books too.
Here is how all stakeholders are involved on eBasta
eBasta Android App
eBasta Android App is essentially a customized eBook reader which helps students and teachers to access content downloaded through eBasta portal. The app is currently only on Android and it is not available on Play Store. The users will need to download the apk from here and then install it on their mobile devices.
Even though it is a new, eBasta already lists down good number of school books, which are available for free. As and when the platform gets popular, I am sure publishers will make a beeline to upload their school related digital content.
As mentioned earlier, most of the previous Digital India initiatives have been geared towards offering various government services. With eBasta, the Government is now showing that they want Digital India initiative to spread to all walks of life!