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Interactive Digital Merit Badge Books

posted May 29, 2015, 6:53 AM by Mark McDermond
This is a new way to work on merit badges.
 
Besides borrowing merit badge books from the Troop library, or from the Conifer library, buying our own hardcopy book, buying our own online book (i.e. kindle, ipad, etc), we can now use interactive digital books.  The Boy Scouts just released the first four interactive digital merit badges books:  Cooking, First Aid, Animation and Robotics. In July they will release Communications, Digital Technology, Family Life, and Personal Fitness.  In September they will release Camping, Cycling, Hiking, and Swimming. They will also release more in December, but I do not know which ones yet.
 
The interactive digital books are the same price as the print books ($5.35 after tax).  You can buy them by going to ScoutStuff.org (http://www.scoutstuff.org/bsa/literature-media/interactive-digital.html).  The advantages are videos (like how-to clips), the search engine, simulations/animations, and the online Q&A.  You cannot download the book to your laptop. You view the book on-line by logging onto the website.  You cannot print pages unless you save a “screen snapshot” and print the snapshot. 
 
They will stop making the kindle version of the merit badge books.  Starting now, the will only make normal books and the Interactive Digital books.  Once you purchase the interactive digital merit  badge pamphlet, it is available to you on anything that connects to the internet.  Access is user-account based, but (I think) the system will allow you to use two devices at a time.  Because it is user-account based, this means you cannot donate it to the Troop after you finish.  However, if the Troop Librarian creates an account and purchases it first, then it might be possible to share it depending on how it the Troop buys it and how the Librarian tracks the account use, and how ever the copyright works (like how we share the current hard copy books).  This is a good question for our Troop Librarian.  Our Librarian will also need to work out details since (I think) it can only be accessed by two devices at a time.
 
When a merit badge is updated, the interactive digital merit badge book should update for free, so it should always be current.
 
Jacob
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