This is why Hugh McGuire is so great, he’s clear-sighted and setting about fixing a REAL problem. Success cannot be too far away. I love the idea of PressBook, I want it to succeed, I’m sure it will:
Book production is broken right now, because it’s still focused on creating a print book, and then somehow generating an ebook. So ebooks are still an afterthought in production processes. But even more important, in the long run, is that those producing books aren’t yet even thinking about the web – which I’m certain will be the ultimate place that books will live.
via From Book Oven to PressBooks, Hugh McGuire Shares His Startup Story.
Quite the issue this.
This is the problem with ebooks. Publishers, editors, and authors treat them as Cinderella stepchildren — as a way to do the work of increasing revenues without being given an opportunity to shine on their own — you know, scrub my floors, make them shine, but don’t walk on them. The consequence is that what should be an excellent reading experience becomes an annoying one. The neglect becomes evident, and the $14.99 the publisher demands for the ebook version becomes a sore point. In my case, it becomes a double sore point because I bought both the hardcover version (where the illustrations are readable) and the ebook version as I noted in The Lure of eBooks: Gotcha!. I might have done this again with another TOR/Macmillan book, albeit reluctantly, but now you can bet I won’t. Rip me off once, shame on you; rip me off twice, shame on me!
via The Problem Is: Publisher’s Don’t Read eBooks! « An American Editor.
Odd how this, from the design perspective, chimes with the discussion over at Mike Shatzkin’s blog yesterday and my thinking about Niche Veritcals.
Step one would be “Attract a large number of potential users”. Without doubt the best way to do this is with good content. Content precedes design.
Only when you have a good audience should you start thinking about how best to serve it and turn it into a community. Unfortunately it’s very rare that we get emails saying “Guys I’ve got over 2,000 people hitting my cricket site every week, commenting, emailing me, and I’d like to build an network to support this“.
via Contrast | The Blog | On Communities and Content.