Monday, August 1

My thoughts on ebooks

from here
I feel like I should comment on the format of the book [Rules of Civility, featuring one of my favorite female protags of all time]. I have a Barnes & Noble Nook (which I love -- it’s the newer, touch-screen e-ink Nook, not the Nook Color, which is really more like a pseudo iPad), so I had to download the book in Adobe Digital Editions, a program that I sort of see the point of but I don’t find it to be very intuitive for some reason. (Stupidity on my part, maybe?)

Anyway, because of the type of e-pub it was, I couldn’t highlight or make notes in the Nook. I could bookmark pages, which was nice, but I found it inconvenient to be unable to interact with the text as I can with other e-book formats, and of course with cloth-and-paper books. And the formatting of the e-pub itself was weird in places when I enlarged the font, which was necessary because the full-page view was basically unreadably small.

My question is when will there be an industry standard for e-pubs? A type of across-the-board standard that translates on all e-readers? Giddyup, publishing industry.


Ali Presley said...

I can tell you with great confidence, we want the same things and we are so on this dilemma.

--Signed, the gal who now works at Chronicle Books

(So excited you like e-books! The stuff that will be possible with them in a few years is mind-blowing.)

Erin said...

Ali—Congrats!!! And I'm excited for the future of e-books. I fully expect to be informed of insider developments.

Vixel said...

I don't think there's going to be a standard format any time soon unfortunately. It's widely speculated for example, that the Kindle is sold at a loss, so without the closed format tying users into buying their books from Amazon (in theory anyway), thus allowing a lower price for the reader itself, I don't think the uptake would have been as big as it has been.

I spent most of my degree (Publishing with English) arguing that ebooks weren't going to be "big" any time soon. I must say I'm glad to have been proven wrong, as I totally adore my Kindle!

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