Current IT field related information

31 Jul 09 eBooks: The Story So Far

Our desire to know, and our need to know about things that matter to us cause the existence of the Internet, or any other media for that matter, and the more media developed the more people flocked towards it to get information on certain topic. The Internet is the glaring example of this, and the rise of eBooks as an information dissemination product is the more fulgent example of this theory.

The existence of eBooks has been caused entirely by the development of the Internet and the web publishing software. If the former sped up the dispersion of an eBook, the latter made the creation of eBook a domestic process. The nature of publishing has changed forever. Now, publishing books is no longer just about sending your manuscript to big printers and then the printed pages to the book binders and pasters.

Initially, there was some debate about the standard of the eBook, and also about the acceptance of eBooks. Both the issues more or less have been addressed. Now, you will not hear about those eBook publishing software (like eBook Gold, eBook Maker, etc.) that were creating news on the Internet till early years of 21st century, nor you will hear about the format war between Adobe (maker of pdf files) and Microsoft (maker of LIT files) as pdf has become de facto standard for eBook publishing for the web or PC, .mobi, .epw, etc. are closing in, but .pdf is still the preferred publishing format.

As far as the acceptance of eBooks is concerned, we all know its standing in comparison to paper books. The eBook surely has failed the expectation of digital gurus of later 90s, who were swearing by eBooks and claimed, an eBook will altogether replace a paper book. Although eBook has failed the expectation of the digital gurus, it nonetheless, has made it mark, and shown the world that it can co-exist with paper books. An eBook is now commonly believed as small, less than 100 pages pdf files.

This assumption is a bit far from truth because the digitalization of the documents by companies like Google and Microsoft, and growing acceptance of eBook readers – Amazon Kindle, Sony eBook Reader, Foxit eBook Reader, etc. – has started to shift the balance towards eBooks. These devices have neutralized the advantage – mobility, portability, and radiation-free reading – paper books had over eBooks. You do not need to sit on your chair anymore and consume the screen radiation in order to read an eBook. All you need is a device that uses E Ink technology to display texts, and it is just a matter of time before we get eBook readers with color display.

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