Increased Threats to the iPad Coming?

It is ironic. As we enter 2012, a year that is by all accounts setting up to be “The Year of the Tablet!”,  we are likely to see the dimming of the preeminence of the iPad, the device that created the category in the first place.

We tend to forget that many jaded pundits scoffed at the launch of the iPad.  […]

The Redesign of Reading

Recently I visited the collection of rare books at The British Library. Among the panoply of priceless artifacts was a Gutenberg Bible. Alongside such monuments in the collection as the “Canterbury Tales” or the handwritten manuscript of “Jane Eyre ,” the Gutenberg Bible was less a cultural touchstone than a technical one. It was not that Gutenberg created any single […]

What the Cloud Really Means for Publishers

Cloud computing refers to the delivery of applications, data storage and other computing resources over a network. In other words, the applications and data are sitting on a server somewhere, not on your desktop. This is the polar opposite of the “personal computer” model that most are familiar with, in which everything is sitting right there on your PC: the […]

Google’s eBookstore: A Rising Tide

With a P.T. Barnum -like flourish, Google launched its eBookstore as “the largest e-books collection in the world!” Over 3 million titles! Step right up! Best-sellers and public-domain titles!

Google made good on its commitment of launching the eBookstore before the end of 2010, and 2011 will be an interesting year for the e-book world.

The launch of the Google eBookstore is the […]

Re-architecting Product Development

The advent of digital media has long threatened that the most fundamental processes of publishing must fundamentally change, as publishers grapple with delivering their offerings to multiple formats and devices, simultaneously and with equal quality.  Now, after years of delay and procrastination, publishers are beginning to this process of fundamental change.

Since the late Jurassic Period, books have been created with […]

The iPad Impact

The iPad launch was a classic bit of business theater. In what may prove to be one of the great product launches of his fabled career, Steve Jobs  unleashed his unique alchemy of stealth, spectacle and awe to lay his pearls before the impatient masses. The public played its role fervently, at once being swept up into the rapture of […]

E-Reader Evolution—Beyond Ink

Common in the history of technology products is the pattern that devices with multiple functions generally take market share from earlier, single-purpose devices. A classic example can be found in word processing: Dedicated word processors, such as those from Wang and IBM, gave way to PCs that could be used for a wide range of applications, among them word processing. […]

Quantity = 1: Customization’s Unfulfilled Promise

Digital content enables distribution on a massive scale. A few examples:

the ability to inexpensively and instantaneously spam the known universe;
the ability to distribute video content to audiences that a small cable network would find attractive; and
most importantly, the ability for Ashton Kutcher to keep a million of us abreast of his every move in real time (via Twitter).

Digital platforms remove the […]

Of Androids and E-books

After a year of anticipation and rumor, the recent unveiling of the ‘Android’ was decidedly anticlimactic. The launch of the first product running Google’s open-source Android mobile operating system, a device manufactured by HTC of Taiwan to operate on the T-Mobile network, didn’t make much of a splash. The press was unabashedly nonplussed. Out of the gate, the launch of […]