Content on E-Books; hot topic at this week’s Frankfurt Book Fair

E-Books content is created with digital files, such as Adobe InDesign (INDD) files. Markzware‘s PageZephyr Search (content search application) can search InDesign in proprietary file formats used in the digital workflow. The found text can be used to create content for digital publishing of electronic books (e-books).

“Electronic books may transform publishing industry” is an article on with the tagline, “Executives discuss impact of e-books at Frankfurt Books Fair.”

By Polya Lesova, MarketWatch

FRANKFURT (MarketWatch) — Electronic books may transform not only the publishing industry, but the very definition of what constitutes a book. E-books — whether read on an iPhone, a Kindle or a laptop — are a hot topic at this week’s Frankfurt Book Fair.

“Books are just devices. Wikipedia is the new Britannica,” said Ronald Schild, managing director of Germany-based MVB Marketing- und Verlagsservice des Buchhandels GmbH.

Digital content is superior in many ways,” Schild said Thursday at a panel discussion on electronic books at the fair. “Reading today is solitary process, but there are many other ways of reading. [In the future,] it may become more of a conversation.”

While electronic books still account for only a small part of global publishing, their popularity is growing. Inc. (AMZN), which sells the electronic-book reader Kindle, is facing growing competition from other e-reader producers. In addition, many users are reading electronic content on their laptops, PCs and multi-functional mobile devices such as Apple Inc.’s (AAPL 189.91, -1.39, -0.72%) iPhone.

“It’s very arrogant of publishers to think that they are going to control prices,” said Victoria Barnsley, chief executive and publisher of HarperCollins UK. “All the indications are that consumers are going to expect prices to go down.”

Barnsley said there’s likely to be a “menu” of pricing models, including ownership, rental and subscription.

“There’s a slight concern for our industry in this,” she said, adding that most people tend to read books only once. “There’s going to be quite an issue for us if a lot of people choose to go to the rental model.” HarperCollins Publishers is a subsidiary of the Corp., (NWS 14.65, -0.03, -0.20%), which also owns MarketWatch, the publisher of this report.

“Apple has been huge for us,” said Andrew Savikas, vice president of digital initiatives at O’Reilly Media, a privately held company based in California that publishes computer books and software.

“Part of it is just the sheer numbers [of iPhones],” Savikas said. “I think it’s going to continue to be a bigger opportunity than standalone book devices.” Commenting on the business opportunities that come with digital books, Savikas said: “These are enormous marketplaces and they never close.” Barnsley of HarperCollins said: “E-books offer us impulse buying on a much greater scale. But prices are going to come down.”

Richard Charkin, executive director of Bloomsbury Publishing, thinks publishers can learn from successful transitions to electronic from print. In scientific-journal publishing, for example, print and electronic publishing has been separated, he said.

“One of the problems we have is that we’re pretending that digital is another version of print,” Charkin said. “In 10 years, there will be very little printing in scientific publishing.” Also, the costs of archiving paper books in libraries are “huge” and electronic books can be very helpful in that respect, he said.

Savikas of O’Reilly Media said “that efficiency point is the critical one.” E-books can be very beneficial for publishers when it comes to managing inventories and cash flow, he said. Bloomsbury  (UK:BMY 131.00, -2.00, -1.50%), which publishes the Harry Potter book series, said earlier Thursday in a statement that “trading is in line with management expectations although this is still dependent on the level of demand between now and the end of the year.”

The group’s cash position at the end of last month was 32.3 million British pounds which was after payment in September of royalties due to authors. With major authors such as John Irving and Margaret Atwood being published in the autumn, the program for the trade publishing division is second-half weighted, Bloomsbury also said.

PageZephyr Search is a content search application from Markzware that allows you to do a desktop search. Users can search Adobe InDesign (INDD) proprietary file formats for publishing and ePublishing.

How do you want your content on E-books for the ePub market? PageZephyr Search can search InDesign files to help find specific text, so that you can write stories. Use these stories to publish InDesign via print or the internet.

Markzware PageZephyr Search gives maximum penetration into large volume archives of proprietary desktop publishing documents. Common keywords produce results, locating the target resource(s). More than just doing a simple content search, PageZephyr Search will display content from multiple document stories. Users can copy and paste to a text editor, then combine, edit and create new content.

Proprietary file types created with desktop publishing (DTP) applications tend to hide from Mac OS X’s built-in search application, Spotlight. For users with large amounts of these files, search can be an awkward process of trial and error.  PageZephyr Search can eliminate that problem and look into the proprietary files.  How incredibly exciting!

Content search via PageZephyr Search helps you to recover the value of your desktop publishing assets. Now, content sitting in unsearchable proprietary desktop publishing files can be located for your current creative use.

PageZephyr Search allows editors, journalists, IT managers, information professionals, publishers, graphic designers, printers and more the ability to see inside Adobe InDesign files. You can preview the content and do a full desktop search, like a Google search on your hard drive. PageZephyr Search allows you to find relevant text and display it for you, right on your desktop. Mind you, these are proprietary file formats that could not be searched without opening them in their expensive native applications.

Content on E-Books; hot topic at this week’s Frankfurt Book Fair

Title: Content on E-Books; hot topic at this week’s Frankfurt Book Fair
Published on: October 27, 2009
David Dilling

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