This paper is based on the recorded proceedings of a conference held in Newport Beach, California, on August 22 and 23, 2007. This conference was attended by educators, authors, administrators of open-source based organizations, and entrepreneurs, all of whom had a stake in the concept of open textbooks. The goals of the conference were to summarize and assess the current development of open textbooks, and to describe a possible direction for future development and funded support of open textbook projects. This paper has the same goals, and provides at least partial answers to the four fundamental questions: Why do we need open textbooks? What are open textbooks (how are they defined)? How will open textbooks be produced and then used? And finally, when will open textbooks be available in sufficient quantity and quality to have a positive impact? In addressing these questions, other dimensions relevant to the Open Education Resource (OER) movement emerge for discussion.
Open Textbooks: Why? What? How? When?
Linked Data show/hide