BBookX is a new technology that uses a human-assisted computing approach to enable creation of open source textbooks. BBookX uses intelligent algorithms to explore Open Educational Resource (OER) repositories and return relevant resources that can be combined, remixed, and re-used to support specific learning goals. As instructors and students add materials to their book, BBookX learns and further refines the recommended material.
To request an account for BBookx, please visit: https://bbookexp.psu.edu/request-account
(Note: if you are a Penn State student, faculty member, or staff, please use your PSU email address to expedite the processing of the request)
Textbooks can run hundreds of dollars and be a significant percentage of a student’s expenses. BBookX can help lessen that financial burden. When teachers can create their own textbooks so quickly and easily, they can offer the finished books to students at little to no cost, making education a little more affordable.
BBookX dramatically slashes the time needed to create a new textbook because it completes the research and first draft for you. You can leave the text as is or add your own, original content. You can also edit the text yourself or enlist the help of an expert who can evaluate the book for accuracy. Either way, BBookX saves you valuable time.
A Living Textbook
Unlike traditional textbooks that are printed and bound, a BBookX textbook is electronic and dynamic. You can build a book and share it with a colleague, who can then tweak it to best fit their own curriculum. You can also edit your book as your own curriculum changes. And automatic updates from sources like Wikipedia mean your book stays up-to-date without extra effort from you.
Textbooks as a Learning Tool
Faculty aren’t the only ones who can build their own books—students can, too. By creating their own textbooks, students can gear the content to their own interests, becoming more invested in learning. And while Google tailors its search results to past search histories, BBookX doesn’t—giving users a broader picture of the world by not limiting the content it returns.
- Wang, Shuting, Chen Liang, Zhaohui Wu, Kyle Williams, Bart Pursel, Benjamin Brautigam, Sherwyn Saul, Hannah Williams, Kyle Bowen, and C. Lee Giles. “Concept hierarchy extraction from textbooks.” In Proceedings of the 2015 ACM Symposium on Document Engineering, pp. 147-156. ACM, 2015.
- Liang, Chen, Shuting Wang, Zhaohui Wu, Kyle Williams, Bart Pursel, Benjamin Brautigam, Sherwyn Saul, Hannah Williams, Kyle Bowen, and C. Lee Giles. “Bbookx: An automatic book creation framework.” In Proceedings of the 2015 ACM Symposium on Document Engineering, pp. 121-124. ACM, 2015.
- Penn State develops new technology to create robot-written textbooks
October 20, 2015 – Penn State News
- At Penn State, robots begin writing the textbooks
October 20, 2015 – Philadelphia Inquirer
- New Technology Uses Robots To Write Textbooks
October 21, 2015 – Tech Times
- Penn State Technology Allows Faculty and Students to Build Their Own Textbooks from OER
October 22, 2015 – Campus Technology
- Machine Learning Tool Uncovers Open Educational Resources for Faculty
October 23, 2015 – Center for Digital Education
- New AI could help write your next textbook, using Penn State technology
October 26, 2015 – TechRepublic