Finding E Text in Kurzweil Format

1.   Classic Literature CD that comes with the purchase of Kurzweil.

It has more than 1800 titles from the public domain, including classics, all the US presidential inaugural addresses, US history documents, and some scientific and religious texts.  Obviously, this does not have current textbooks, but some of these texts may be used in courses.
The table of contents

The CD’s contains:

  • Literary classics by Jane Austen, Geoffrey Chaucer, Joseph Conrad, Charles Dickens, Fyodor Dostoyevsky,Hermann Hesse, Henry James, William Shakespeare, George Bernard Shaw, Leo Tolstoy and Oscar Wilde.
  • Children’s classics by L. Frank Baum, Brothers Grimm, Rudyard Kipling, Jack London,   and Mark Twain.
  • Classic texts from Aristotle and Plato.
  • Scientific works such as Einstein’s “Relativity: The Special and General Theory.”
  • Reference materials, including world factbooks, famous speeches, history resources,  and United States law.
  • Religious Texts

2.   Outsourcing the scanning and digital conversion

If you are determined to have a Kurzweil version of your textbooks (in other words, you aren’t willing to use a different text reader), you need to purchase the required textbooks ASAP that are listed on your online course syllabus(i), and then send them to a company that will scan the books for you for a fee.

Companies that have high-speed scanning services:
In the USA

A.  Badger Scanner Services

“Document Conversion Pricing:
25 cents per page for Standard Document Conversion,
50 cents per page for Document Conversion with Individual Page Optimization.”

B.  National Scanning
“National Scanning utilizes specialized software and processes for industry-leading data recognition accuracy and results.
Call for rates:
Corporate Office
25 Commercial Drive
Wrentham, MA 02093
Phone: (888) 211-1797
Fax: (508) 384-5322”

C.  TransAccess scanning services
“It’s easy – just fill out this Book Scanning Request Form and we will contact you with what to do next! – Cost: $1.25 per scanned page in Kurzweil 3000 format. $.75 per scanned page in TIFF (with no editing).

– There will be a $15.00 charge for additional copies of a CD. For these, we will also need a letter and proof of purchase indicating that a corresponding print copy of the document exists as noted above.

– If you are expecting a large volume of books requiring scanning (approximately 40 or more), you might consider a subscription service. For this service we charge $1000 and offer half price on all scanning for one year. (Please see the prices quoted above). For more information contact John Cavano, OTR/L at (408) 278-2005.”


Daryl Crouse, CI, CT
Terp et al, LLC
6048 Avenida de Castillo
Long Beach, CA 90803
562-342-4246 Voice”

“With the help of an innovative, book scanning machine, “Book Snap”, I can convert your textbooks to a variety of formats including text files and accessible PDF’s. The book binding will remain in perfect condition. I can do it quickly, efficiently and cost effectively! Just send me the textbook you want digitized, and I will send it back to you in the desired format within just a few days.

All Textbooks can be converted to one of the following formats:

1. Adobe Acrobat PDF/Image Formats
Compatible with learning disability and/or screen reading programs like
Kurzwiel, WYNN or Openbook.
Up to 175 pages ………………………… $65
Up to 300 pages ………………………… $95
Up to 500 pages ………………………… $125
Up to 700 pages ………………………… $155
Up to 999 pages ………………………... $195
Up to 1500 pages………………………. $250

2. Text File.
Screen reader friendly.  (no error correction included)
Up to 175 pages ………………………… $75
Up to 300 pages ………………………… $150
Up to 500 pages ………………………… $195
Up to 700 pages ………………………… $240
Up to 999 pages ………………………… $290
Up to 1500 pages……………………….  $340

E. TechSolutions
FAX – 1-406-538-8174
Their membership tab gives a 404 error so I can’t tell how much a membership costs or how that relates to the cost of getting a book scanned and converted into .kesi files.

Textbook Preparation Cost is $1.25 per page not including Maps, or Math textbooks
Pages that include a maps,and Math that you wish have fully prepared will be charged at a rate of $2.25/page.

Our books are ready to use by your STUDENTS.

*Zone Edited
*OCR Corrected
*Spell Checked
*Page Numbering matches the numbering of the book
*Chapter Dividing
*Books are rebound in spiral format”

F.  Digilife Media

Contact Digilife Media:
Daniel Berkowitz, CEO
Katherine Berkowitz, Business Manager
Mailing Address:
Digilife Media, LLC
809 E. Bloomingdale Avenue
Brandon, FL 33511-8113
FAX #: 813-689-4328 [please include #261 on cover sheet]

Pricing Information for E-Text Conversion:The Digilife pricing schematic reviews each item to be converted and considers it from several aspects. These include:
Source material (hardcopy print, image PDF, photocopy of original, etc.)
Format of source material
Low Format = clean source materials with little or no need for editing or cleansing, minimal graphics suitable for black and white or greyscale output
Medium Format = source materials with greater numbers of images, multiple columns, side bars and boxes
High Format = source materials with many images, side bars, pull-out boxes, multiple columns, glossy paper, and other hazards
Additional charges may apply for source materials on glossy paper, those requiring color output or input, used or marked items, etc.
Desired output format
Digilife can covert your source materials into the following output formats:
Image PDF,Text-Based Documents suitable for use with a wide variety of text-to-speech programs and screenreaders, including:Rich Text Format (.rtf)– Microsoft Word (.doc)–Open Office — Plain Text (.txt) — Accessible (tagged) PDF-
MP3 Audio– DAISY Talking Book
Digilife’s Per Page Pricing anticipates every step of the conversion process, including (as appropriate):Receipt of materials from customer –Removal of bindings and preparation — Scanning of materials — Optical Character Recognition — Editing and Formatting –Proper Pagination [Using our exclusive Digilife Paginator software program] — Conversion to output format –Quality control –Delivery to customer –Storage of materials as backup
Per Page Pricing ranges from 0.25-cents per page to $2.00 per page and we will never charge extra for any of the above steps. We can also offer discounts for volume work and contractual arrangements Please contact us directly for more information.

G. Access Text Network and the Alternative Media Access Center

They have extensive capabilities to product alternative forms of books for Higher Ed.
You can contact Dr. Lee at:

The Alternative Media Access Center
Christopher Lee
Georgia Institute of Technology | Enterprise Innovation Institute
512 Means Street | Suite 250 |
Atlanta, GA 30318

phone 404.894.8000 | fax 404.894.8323


In Canada:

H.  MICROComputer Science Centre scanning services (Ontario)

Toll Free: (800) 290-6563
“Files are placed on a CD and shipped back to you
Editing, spell checking & zone editing of the document can be provided upon a request. Please call in for our special pricing!

I. Desktop Publishing Services (Nova Scotia)
Scanning for Kurzweil: (Services available)
Single or multi-page scanning.
Preparation for most types of work on up to 8.5 x 11 inch format scan.
Files converted to Kurzweil file, PDF format, or in Text format.
Files will be forwarded to you on a CD for you to upload to the Universal Library of Kurzweil.
Files available are numerous books, novels as well as some text books at most grade levels.

3. NetLibrary or ebrary

Check your library’s website or online catalog to see if they have purchased either NetLibrary or ebrary.  Landmark College has 4505 NetLibrary ebooks available to view, free to people who are able to log onto the Landmark College network. I was able to select 2 paragraphs at a time and have Kurzweil read it.

A. NetLibrary:

You can find the Landmark College NetLibrary’s eBook collection by doing an advanced search in WebCat and select “Electronic Text” in the item type dropdown menu.  Here’s what a search for the subject “Biology” and item type “Electronic Text” in WebCat looks like:

The psychology of gratitude [electronic resource]
Emmons, Robert A.
Streptococcus pneumoniae [electronic resource] : molecular biology & mechanisms of disease
Tomasz, Alexander.
Reproduction in context [electronic resource] : social and environmental influences on reproductive physiology and behavior
Wallen, Kim.
Labyrinth [electronic resource] : a search for the hidden meaning of science
Pesic, Peter.
Evolution [electronic resource]
Strickberger, Monroe W.
The coming biotech age [electronic resource] : the business of bio-materials
Oliver, Richard W., 1946-
Everybody’s story [electronic resource] : wising up to the epic of evolution
Rue, Loyal D.
Amphibian metamorphosis [electronic resource] : from morphology to molecular biology
Shi, Yun-Bo.
Ace your midterms & finals. Introduction to biology [electronic resource]
Axelrod, Alan, 1952-

To actually view the book, first select “View” under the title, and scroll down the screen until you see the last line of the record that is a very long URL in blue.  Then click on the URL.

B.  Ebrary

Since Landmark College does not subscribe to or purchase ebrary, you’ll need to see if your own library uses ebrary by checking that library’s online catalog or by asking a librarian.

Once you have searched and found a book, you need to download the free ebrary reader. The directions and tips for using that reader are usually listed or a URL on the same page.  (At least on the 4 schools that I checked).   It’s a little confusing because the word “reader” implies a text-to-speech feature, which is not a true assumption. However, ebrary has beta release update that will make using a text reader possible so this may change in the future.  The ebrary reader does have some helpful features like linking to definitions, encyclopedia references and map locations.  You can also take notes, search the entire ebook, and bookmark pages.

4.  Digital Book Index

Once you get used to the way this website is set up, it really is an impressive mega-index of digital indexes (an index is a directory or catalog). You don’t need to search for your book at the Gutenberg Project, Bartleby’s and Bibliomania websites separately; it’s a one-stop search. Most textbooks aren’t available here, but some of the books, like the online physics or calculus books, might help you out if you have trouble understanding the text in your book.

Its home page is not the best because you need to scroll down to “continue to Login” before you find a search field, and you need to log in but it is free and worth the effort.

It is so large and frequently used, it has set up two mirror sites.  It will tell you which mirror site is receiving less traffic.  The site is poorly designed because once you log in and select the mirrored site, it’s not clear that you have to scroll down to the bottom of the page for the search box.

“provides links to more than 141,000 full text books from more than 1800 publishers, universities, and various private sites.”A short list of the archives and publishers indexed are:
Internet Archive
Library of Congress
Sacred Texts
The National Library of Canada

The formats of each site’s materials vary. If more than one format is available for a specific item, all the formats are listed, and you can select the format you want.

To give you an idea of how the categories look when you search by subject, here is a screen shot of a small section; each blue “n” to the left of each category indicates a live link to that subject’s sites:

Next is a screen shot of the results of selecting African-American: Slavery – Lives & Narratives Category; note that it lists related pages and the available formats for each item:

The next screen shot shows the results when selecting the Html (as shown in the previous screen) for the book by John Quincy Adams.  It also lists a summary and other related subjects as hyperlinks.


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