ENTRIES TAGGED "digital content"

Digital publishing and the loss of intimacy

The cognitive overhead involved in reading a book has increased tremendously

Reading used to be an intimate experience. Even Amazon, the pioneer in digital publishing, branded its Kindle with a child reading alone under a tree. Books were specially designed to disappear into the background as much as possible, helped by a laundry list of conventions as to language, punctuation, format, and structure, thus allowing readers to direct all their attention and cognitive powers to the text at hand.

The first digital platforms made a decent job of emulating the traditional experience. Certainly, the overhead of managing an Amazon account is something readers could do without, but allowances had to be made. Black text on a white screen was still the reference, and great pains were taken to ease users into this new experience: options were few, and the physicality of the book was heavily reflected in the shape and size of the device.

Read more…

Comments: 9 |

The publishing industry has a problem, and EPUB is not the solution

Ebooks are deliberately being made defective through digital restrictions

This article contains my personal views, not those of my employer Lonely Planet.

I’ll be blunt. Ebooks and EPUB are to the publishing industry what Blu-Ray is to the movie industry: a solution to yesterday’s problem made irrelevant by broader change in the industry. Both have a couple of years left in them, and there’s good money to be made while the kinks get worked out from the alternatives, but the way the wind is blowing is clear.

Whenever someone proposes EPUB as a solution, ask yourself a question: what’s the problem they’re trying to solve? As a standard drafted by the IDPF, a self-proclaimed “organization for the Digital Publishing Industry”, EPUB is built squarely to address the industry’s biggest headache: ensuring that, in the digital age, they retain the ability to charge money for distributing content. The best interests of authors or readers simply do not figure in the equation. Read more…

Comments: 63 |

Graceful eBook Degradation

New approaches and tools are required to develop and present the highest fidelity content across devices

Remember the old days when print was the only format a publisher had to worry about? Now the minimum output requirements include PDF, mobi and EPUB. But what about the devices used to read those formats? You’ve got to consider eInk displays, mobile phones, tablets and computers.

We’re in the very early innings of the ebook game and our focus is mostly still on quick-and-dirty print-to-e conversions. That means the ebook pretty much renders the same way as the print book. Reading devices offer so much horsepower and presentation capabilities yet the vast majority of our content is nothing more than the printed page on a screen. Why?

Read more…

Comments: 3 |
The state of ebook pricing

The state of ebook pricing

Loss leaders, the agency model and other factors shaping ebook prices.

Joe Wikert looks at the agency model, efficiencies, fixed pricing and other major trends that will drive ebook pricing in the months ahead.

Comments: 9 |
A study confirms what we've all sensed: Readers are embracing ereading

A study confirms what we've all sensed: Readers are embracing ereading

BISG's Angela Bole on results from the "Consumer Attitudes Toward E-Book Reading" study.

In this interview, Angela Bole of the Book Industry Study Group reviews results from the "Consumer Attitudes Toward E-Book Reading" study. She says the data looks good for publishers, assuming they can develop the right business models.

Comment: 1 |
Three reasons why we're in a golden age of publishing entrepreneurship

Three reasons why we're in a golden age of publishing entrepreneurship

Digital is creating fertile ground for startups.

Books, publishing processes and readers have all made the jump to digital, and that's creating considerable opportunities for publishing startups.

Comments: 2 |
Research and restraint: Two more things to add to your digital publishing toolkit

Research and restraint: Two more things to add to your digital publishing toolkit

"Breaking the Page" author Peter Meyers on the tools, tech and future of digital publishing.

Since 2009, Peter Meyers has immersed himself in the tools and companies in the digital publishing world. Here he shares what he's learned, who's doing digital publishing well, and what's surprised him.

Comment |
Now available: "Breaking the Page" preview edition

Now available: "Breaking the Page" preview edition

The big question: How do we make digital books as satisfying as their print predecessors?

The three chapters in the free preview edition of "Breaking the Page: Transforming Books and the Reading Experience" focus on browsing, searching, and navigating.

Comment: 1 |
Sometimes one screen isn't enough

Sometimes one screen isn't enough

A look at 10 multi-screen projects and experiments.

Peter Meyers rounds up 10 content projects that span multiple screens. Some involve separate physical displays while others use different virtual windows.

Comment |
We're in the midst of a restructuring of the publishing universe (don't panic)

We're in the midst of a restructuring of the publishing universe (don't panic)

Hugh McGuire says the disruption publishing has endured is a mere hint of what's to come.

Hugh McGuire, co-author of "Book: A Futurist's Manifesto," explains why publishing's digital transformation goes way beyond format shifts. He also reveals nine ways the publishing industry will change over the next five years.

Comments: 4 |