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media:Fw: Fwd: Wired News :Adobe's Novel Approach to E-Books

From: David Poehlman <poehlman1@home.com>
Date: Wed, 31 Jan 2001 08:50:32 -0500
Message-ID: <00ec01c08b8c$c78f1820$2cf60141@mtgmry1.md.home.com>
To: "wai-ig list" <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>

----- Original Message -----
From: "Kelly Ford" <kford@TELEPORT.COM>
Sent: January 31, 2001 8:52 AM
Subject: Fwd: Wired News :Adobe's Novel Approach to E-Books

Anyone know the accessibility story on all of this?  Will the plugin
and what about all the problems it has even if it does?

>  From Wired News, available online at:
>Adobe's Novel Approach to E-Books
>by Kendra Mayfield
>8:30 a.m. Jan. 29, 2001 PST
>If Stephen King's recent move to pull the plug on his e-serial The
>Plant is any indication, consumers aren't yet ready to read lengthy
>fiction off a small screen.
>Software company Adobe (ADBE) believes that e-books will go beyond
>digital versions of novels and is working on technology that makes
>them useful tools for business travelers and students.
>On Monday, Adobe announced the release of its new e-book software,
>Adobe Acrobat eBook Reader 2.0. Adobe also unveiled version 2.0 of
>Adobe Content Server, a system that secures and prepares Adobe PDF
>files for online distribution and purchase.
>"We don't necessarily think that that's the narrow range where
>should be pigeonholed," said Kevin Nathanson, group product manager
>for Adobe e-books. "We look at it as part of a much broader
>Adobe said that BarnesandNoble.com will feature a range of new Adobe
>PDF-based e-books on their e-book website. Adobe will also sell books
>on its own e-books website.
>Adobe entered the e-book fray in 2000 with its purchase of e-book
>software developer Glassbook.
>But Adobe is taking a different approach from competitors such as
>Microsoft. It will go after two target markets where it thinks
>have the most value: the higher education market and the mobile
>Adobe is targeting students and business workers with
>Internet-connected computers. They may not read an entire textbook or
>research report, but could readily use e-books to search multiple
>books, take notes or highlight text.
>"We believe that the early adopters are people who have a value for
>time saving, and reducing the bulk of papers they lug around," said
>Michael Looney, Adobe's senior director of e-books.
>So instead of focusing on the latest bestsellers, Adobe is bargaining
>with publishers to produce content that's usually considered
>Analysts say that's the right approach.
>"We see those as the growth markets that are going to bleed over into
>the consumer market," said IDC analyst Malcolm Maclachlan.
>While rivals Microsoft (MSFT) and RCA/Thomson race to convert titles
>into their respective e-book reader formats, Adobe hopes to appeal to
>publishers who have already published content in its Portable
>Format (PDF).
>"The vast majority of books that are printed today already exist in
>PDF," Nathanson said. "There's a virtual universe of compelling
>content that's available in the file format."
>Electronic pages captured in PDF look just as they would on paper,
>preserving all the fonts, graphics and layout. PDF files can be read
>by Windows and Macs.
>"If (a publisher) already (has files stored in) PDF, you have a
>good e-book right off the bat," Nathanson said. "The costs of
>conversion are practically nil."
>Users will be able to download Survivor II: Field Guide exclusively
>an Adobe PDF e-book before it is released in print. The guide comes
>equipped with an interactive score sheet so readers can keep tally of
>who will be banished from the popular television show.
>Adobe will feature mostly trade publication e-books and broader
>consumer titles on BarnesandNoble.com. But the company is also
>with educational publishers, institutions and the professional
>marketplace to develop titles.
>Adobe's e-books can also be printed, which according to the company
>a significant advantage over competitors.
>Publishers will be able to set up Adobe Content Server to determine
>whether users can print the e-books, copy them, or have them read
>aloud. Publishers can also define how many copies of a book a user
>make, if they can be lent out to other users, or whether books will
>expire after days, weeks or even a semester.
>"Security is a big issue," Maclachlan said. "Book publishers don't
>have a piracy problem right now. But when you start talking about
>printing, people start to get nervous."
>While RCA/Thomson is marketing its e-book devices to the mass market,
>Adobe is betting that early adopters would rather download a device
>a PC or laptop rather than buy a new piece of hardware.
>"People may want to pick those up, but if we look at the penetration
>(of dedicated e-book devices) so far it's still relatively minimal,
>it's in the gadget category still," Nathanson said.
>Nathanson is hopeful that the partnership with BarnesandNoble.com
>could lead to more downloads of Adobe e-books than for competitors
>that require dedicated devices.
>Others are not so sure.
>"I don't think the laptop is going to be the main reading
>environment," Maclachlan said.
>But whether consumers decide to read e-books on laptops or dedicated
>devices, Maclachlan said Adobe will emerge as one of the
>Related Wired Links:
>E-Books: Just Another Imprint?
>Dec. 12, 2000
>Getting a Read on New E-Books
>Dec. 11, 2000
>At What Cost, E-Books?
>Oct. 17, 2000
>E-Books' Full Court Press
>Aug. 28, 2000
>E-Books in Seybold Spotlight
>Aug. 28, 2000
>E-Books Turn Over a New Leaf
>Dec. 27, 1999
>Copyright &copy; 1994-2001 Wired Digital Inc. All rights reserved.
Received on Wednesday, 31 January 2001 08:50:28 UTC

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