Archive for ebooks

Did you know there is a mobile track at Gilbane Boston?

We’ve been adding content about mobile app development and publishing for a couple of years. We will be adding a full track threaded through the entire conference to our next event, but this year’s Gilbane Boston has quite a few sessions covering aspects of mobile development and content management relevant to Web, marketing/business, IT strategists, and developers.

In fact, we have a sort of a stealth mobile track – stealth, because the sessions are spread out across other tracks. To make it easier to plan schedules for those of you specifically interested in doing more with smartphones and tablets, below are five sessions that are the most directly relevant to mobile. There are other sessions that also cover mobile topics, so be sure to check the overall conference at-a-glance schedule and session descriptions.

Stealth Mobile Track:

T1: Mobile Development: App, Mobile Web, or Hybrid?

Wednesday, November 30, 1:30 – 2:30

You know mobile is becoming the dominant channel, but of course it is actually multiple channels – multiple devices with multiple APIs, form factors, interfaces and capabilities. Do you optimize for each device? Do you try and build a mobile web application? Do you mix it up with a little bit of both? This session will help you understand the pros and cons of different approaches.

Moderator: Jon Marks, Co-founder, Kaldor Product Development Group

Jon Marks, Co-founder, Kaldor Product Development Group

Introduction

Ashley Streb, 
Vice President, Technology, Brightcove

Hybrid Position


Stefan Andreasen, 
CTO Kapow

Browser Position


Philip Ramsey
, Manager, Technical Design, BNA

App Position

P2. iPad Publishing and UI Design


Wednesday, November 30, 2:40 – 4:00

With smartphones and tablets exploding in usage, publishers are racing to deliver content to new types of users who are expecting rich, interactive experiences. Yet publishers are often dependent on third parties who can create these apps for them. This session delves into how some of the standard publishing apps work, and how developers create some of the more advanced features that users are demanding.

Moderator: Ned May, Vice President & Lead Analyst, Outsell

Jim Nasr
, CEO, Armedia


Best Practices for Developing Content Rich Applications for the iPad

Michael Mahoney, 
Senior User Experience Specialist, Microlink


Information as Design 

T3. Is HTML5 the Future – If so, When?

Wednesday, November 30, 4:00 – 5:00

HTML5 enjoys widespread partial support. That is, the major browsers support some HTML5 functionality, and Mozilla, Google, Microsoft, and Apple support it politically. HTML5 promises lots of important new capabilities, but it is an ongoing development is scheduled to become a W3C recommendation in 2014. Many organizations are already using HTML5 for app development, but should they? Is it too soon?

Moderator: Richard Rubin, Principal Consultant, Professional Services, Innodata Isogen

Lubor Ptacek
, VP, Strategic Marketing & GM, Microsoft Solutions Group, Open Text

Phillip Hyun, 
CTO, EndPlay

E5. Thinking Beyond the Website – Mobile and Other Channels Deserve Your Attention Too


Thursday, December 1, 9:40 – 10:40

As phones and other mobile devices get “smarter”, so must marketers get smarter about their multi-channel strategies. It used to be acceptable for brands to focus on their desktop browser experience, and then, at some point, dumb them down by removing flash, videos, and all the other extras so that prospective customers could view the website on their phones. But this strategy is no longer viable. The Splinternet Age brings not only smart phones, but also tablets, mobile applications, social sites, and wifi-ready televisions just to name a few. As more and more consumers seek to experience your brand through these mediums, having a strong multi-channel strategy is essential.

Moderator: Scott Liewehr, Senior Consultant, Web Content Management, Outsell’s Gilbane Services



Arje Cahn
, CTO, Hippo

Tom Wentworth, 
CMO, Ektron


New Reality – Mobile First


Michael Assad
, Co-founder & CEO, Agility


Content Management for Digital Marketing: Thinking Beyond the Website

The day before the main conference we also have a pre-conference workshop covering important issues for mobile customer engagement:

Workshop B: Integrating Website and Mobile Strategy for Consistent Customer Engagement

Wednesday, November 29, 9:00 – 12:00

You’ve heard all the talk about web engagement management. You’ve read about web and content optimization for contextual consumption. You may even have preached to others about the rise of mobile-, social-, and personal-ization. We suppose you could even be doing some of these successfully, but we doubt it. These are just a few a few of the sexiest, most contemporary practices that everyone likes to talk about but no one is really doing… but they should. 

In this workshop, renowned author and digital marketing expert Robert Rose teams up with industry analyst and web content management expert Scott Liewehr to teach you how to realize true web engagement across web and mobile channels for your organization. Robert and Scott will teach attendees how to integrate content optimization into the marketing process by pragmatically focusing on three of the primary aspects of web engagement: testing, targeting and contextual design. The workshop walk attendees through a step-by-step approach to each practice, focusing on both the marketing process implications as well as the implementation and operationalization aspects. Web engagement management is more process than technology, so while you may not be able to buy it in a box, you can learn an awful lot about how to implement it in three entertaining, fun-filled and educational hours.

 Attendees will also receive Robert’s brand new book, co-authored with Joe Pulizzi: Managing Content Marketing: The Real-World Guide for Creating Passionate Subscribers to Your Brand.

Instructors: Scott Liewehr, Lead Analyst WCM, Outsell Gilbane, and Rob Rose, Chief Troublemaker, Big Blue Moose

Register for the conference, workshop, or both (speaking of mobile … note a Conference Plus registration includes the Workshop and also a new Kindle Fire tablet.

Check out the Updated Gilbane Boston conference site

The program for our annual Boston event is about 98% complete. We have a great keynote line-up with more to come, 30 additional conference sessions, 6 pre-conference workshops, and 12 product labs. Other useful links are sponsors & exhibitors, speakers, registration, and hotel. Note that we moved from the Westin Copley to the Waterfront Westin this year to be in the new Boston Innovation District and fast-growing Seaport / Fort Point Channel neighborhoods.

Gilbane Boston speaking proposals deadline

Update – We have received a phenomenal number of proposals – almost 50% more than last year. We have also had a huge number of requests for extensions, so we have extended the deadline for speaking proposals through next week – until May 28th. Don’t delay though, as our program committee is already pouring over the proposals we have.

Proposal Deadline: May 16th 28th, 2011

The Gilbane conference is all about helping organizations apply content, web and mobile technologies to communicate with their ecosystem of customers, employees, suppliers, partners, and the rest of the world in the most effective and efficient way possible.

This means understanding what technologies can and can’t do, what practices in applying them succeed or fail, and how to plan for changes in market and technology evolution. We bring together a diverse audience of technologists, marketers, strategists, business managers and analysts to learn, share, and debate best practices and strategies. Our conference is organized into four tracks so attendees in marketing, technology, a business unit, or an internal function will be able to plan a customized agenda.

To submit a proposal for a presentation or panel to contribute your expertise and experience, please see the topics below listed for the four tracks, then follow the instructions and guidelines for submitting proposals using our proposal submission form. Send any questions to speaking@gilbaneboston.com.

You can also learn more by visiting the conference website at http://gilbaneboston.com, where you can also see information from our 2010 conference.

Customers & Engagement track
Topics to be covered include: Web content management, content strategies, analytics, web design and UI, social media, digital and cross channel marketing, rich media, global reach, multilingual practices, personalization, information architecture, designing for mobile devices, e-commerce, search engine optimization. Read more

Colleagues & Collaboration track
Topics to be covered include: Collaborative authoring, intranets, knowledge management, search, wikis, micro-blogging and blogging, managing social and user-generated content, integrating social software into enterprise applications, SharePoint, portals, social software platforms, enterprise 2.0 strategies. Read more

Content Technologies track
Topics to be covered include: Multi-lingual technologies and applications, smartphone, iPad and tablet app development, XML, standards, integration, content migration, search, open source, SaaS, semantic technologies, social software, SharePoint, and relevant consumer technologies. Read more

Cross-channel Publishing track
Topics to be covered include: Multi-channel publishing, multi-lingual publishing, mobile app and digital product development and marketing strategies for the iPad, and other tablets and ebook readers, mobile content management, digital rights, digital asset management, DITA, documentation, structured content, and XML. Read more

http://gilbaneboston.com/speaker_guidelines.html

http://gilbaneboston.com/speaker-submission-form.html

Follow the conference on Twitter at http://twitter.com/gilbaneboston. Tag: gilbaneboston

Questions?speaking@gilbaneboston.com

Sneak peek at the conference community site to be announced next week.

“Extreme multi-channel publishing” and other trends for 2011

I hadn’t planned this post on trends but ended-up creating a list for a colleague who was helping a client, and I was definitely overdue to post something. These are in no particular order, and there is a lot more to say about each of them. There are other trends of course, but these are especially relevant to our coverage of content technologies and to Outsell/Gilbane clients.

  • Marketing and IT continue to learn how to work together as marketing assumes a bigger role in control of digital technology for all customer engagement.
  • Content strategy gets more respect.
  • Mobile confusion reigns – which platforms, which formats, apps vs. mobile web and which apps make sense, what workflows, etc. 
  • “Extreme multi-channel” publishing reality hits. You thought web plus print was a challenge?
  • Enterprise applications start including mobile and don’t look back.
  • “Apps” approach to software distribution expands beyond mobile.
  • The line between pads and notebooks blurs in both user interface and function.
  • Spending on digital channels continues to grow ahead of curve.
  • Enterprise social platform growth stagnates, consumer social platforms continue to grow, but with little direct application to enterprise beyond feature or UI ideas.
  • Business model experimentation accelerates in content businesses.

Apple, eBooks, and the Long Tail Publisher

David Guenette has some cautionary thoughts for the publisher who–quite naturally–will be intrigued by Apple’s new services for publishers being brought to market by Jouve and Innodata-Isogen.

Ebook Formats are Starting to Make More Sense… So be Prepared to Remain Confused during the Evolution

Google Editions, now Google eBooks, has finally shown up, and as was widely anticipated, really will be an ebook game-changer. Technically speaking, Google eBooks is not revolutionary, but the promised transparency of ebook formats across a variety of reading environments (Sony and Barnes and Noble ereaders, desktops and notebooks, and various smartphone devices) is a comfort for both publishers and readers. There have been a number of other efforts—some, perhaps, more vapor than real—that promise much the same thing. Baker & Taylor’s Blio, for example, offers many similar benefits.  PDF and ePub, too, claim a degree of trans-device applicability, and then there is the “apps” approach.

And now, again, there is Amazon. Right on the heels of Google’s announcement of Google eBooks, Amazon has followed the tried-and-true marketing playbook maneuver—also of value to yacht racing, I’m told—of taking the wind out of an opponent’s sails. By expanding Kindle for the Web, Amazon now “…enable[s] anyone with access to a web browser to buy and read full Kindle books—no download or installation required,” according to their December 7, 2010 press release. Amazon’s proprietary .AZW format, with its new, wider platform use, is combating the Google eBook promise of making ebooks easier to use “from the cloud.” Most likely, what Amazon is really trying to do is maintain its position relative to the marketplace’s desire to make ebook buying easier. Here’s Amazon’s positioning, from the aforementioned press release, on the matter:

“Kindle for the Web makes it possible for bookstores, authors, retailers, bloggers or other website owners to offer Kindle books on their websites and earn affiliate fees for doing so,” said Russ Grandinetti, Vice President, Kindle Content. “Anyone with access to a web browser can discover the seamless and consistent experience that comes with Kindle books. Kindle books can be read on the $139 third-generation Kindle device with new high-contrast Pearl e-Ink, on iPads, iPod touches, iPhones, Macs, PCs, BlackBerrys and Android-based devices. And now, anywhere you have a web browser. Your reading library, last page read, bookmarks, notes, and highlights are always available to you no matter where you bought your Kindle books or how you choose to read them.”

You could easily swap out Google for Amazon, plus one or two particular details, and be reading t from the Google press release from the day before.  Google’s challenge will be to make buying ebooks as easy as Amazon, and neither the history of Google’s clunky interfaces generally, nor the first iteration of Google eBooks’ own web site specifically, convinces me that this will be a slam-dunk for Google.

Still, it is easy to see why publishers are happy with Google’s entry into ebooks, since it helps further shift selling options for ebooks away from the Amazon-centric model.  As much as ebooks—especially for trade publishers—has happened in large part because Amazon got out in front and put real money up to make the market happen, more sales options, and less format-specific constraits for readers will help everyone.

You can rest assured that book publishers will continue to struggle to get ebook formats right for some time to come, despite the generous hype in these recent announcement. Kindle format limitations will still force publishers to balance quality and production costs, and ePub—heading for its 3.0 version sometime—will still hang up on the different features represented within different ereader devices capabilities.

That is just one reason why Outsell’s Gilbane Group’s Publishing Practice is developing a second study, following on the heels of A Blueprint for Book Publishing Transformation: Seven Essential Systems to Re-Invent Publishing. Ebooks, Apps, and Formats: The Practical Issues will looks at the topic of content format, because this remains a central concern for book publishers pursuing digital publishing programs, and involves a wide-ranging set of issues from editorial and production to distribution and ecommerce.

With Google eBooks and Amazon’s for the Web, ebook formats and their marketplace continue to evolve.  It sure ain’t “push-button” yet, however.

Stay tuned. Drop a note.

Why Aren’t Publishers Moving to XML Repositories More Quickly?

As we start to delve into some of the interim results of our survey of book publishing professionals, there is a great deal of good data to mull over. While the results are preliminary (and we welcome your participation here), some trends are emerging.

One interesting set of data points surround how publishers are viewing XML, how extensively they work with it, and what technologies they are using to support the management of the XML. Among those using XML, it’s significant that only about half have invested in some kind of storage mechanism specifically for XML, including both relational databases and dedicated XML repositories such as Mark Logic server.

While that overall number might or might not be so striking, I am struck by what some publishers feel is a barrier to adopting an XML repository, namely, the “Challenge of building XML knowledge, skills, or awareness.”  This trumped more traditional barriers to technology adoption such as cost and the maturity of the technology and would seem, on balance, to be a solvable problem.

 

Green Grow the eBooks, Oh

Perhaps it is the season when everything seems especially fecund, or perhaps I can’t resist abusing the lyrics of late, great Robbie Burns, but there is no “perhaps” about electronic book publishing’s astonishing pace of growth.
The Gilbane Group (a division of Outsell, Inc.), together with research partner BISG, is reaching out to the communities of book publishing professionals.  We invite you to participate in Web-based survey, a central research mechanism for our upcoming study A Blueprint for Book Publishing Transformation: Seven Essential Processes to Re-Invent Publishing. The study will be published in June 2010, and all participants in this survey will have full access to the full-length study through The Gilbane Group website.
At the just concluded 2010 BEA—Book Expo America—our research partner on our upcoming study, A Blueprint for Book Publishing Transformation: Seven Essential Processes to Re-Invent Publishing, delivered some facts and figures in a session there.  Kelly Gallagher, VP of Publishing Services at RR Bowker and BISG Reasearch Committee Chair, presented new research from The Book Industry Study Group on consumer attitudes toward eBook reading. According to the research, eBook sales went from 1.5% of all book sales in Q1 2009 to 5% in Q1 2010, with 33% of eBook buyers entering the market in the last six months. The survey was of eBook reading and purchase behavior from print book readers who recently purchased either an eBook reader or an eBook.
Outsell, Inc., our parent company, has also just published news about ebook market growth in education publishing. From the press release: “Outsell estimates the total global market for K-12 and post-secondary textbooks was $15.2 billion in 2009 and will reach $16.6 billion by 2012, representing a modest [compound annual growth rate] CAGR of 2.6 percent. Digital textbook products will fuel the market growth, with a CAGR of 25 percent, while revenues from print textbooks will decline by 1 percent.”
The Outsell report provides case studies of eight publishers’ innovations, including Pearson, Elsevier, Cambridge University Press, Macmillan, Flat World Knowledge, Cengage Learning, Chegg, and CourseSmart. It also provides potential market scenarios over the next 10 years and their likelihood of occurring, and strategies for publishers to “reclaim” revenues lost during a print-only era. To purchase the report, please visit Outsell, Inc. or click here.
Speaking in links, a reminder to all that we’re in the middle of collecting data from our ongoing survey of book publishing professionals, so if you’re one and you haven’t taken the 10-minutes to complete the Blueprint survey, click here. We seek to gain a clearer picture of ebook and related digital publishing efforts underway among the full spectrum of book publishers. Furthermore, the analyst team at The Gilbane Group seeks to identify a number of “pain points” or barriers encountered by book publishers when it comes to their developing or expanding digital publishing programs, including areas such as royalties, digital format choices, digital print decisions, and distribution problems.
So, it is Spring!  Take a survey!