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I’m pleased to be joining the board of the International Digital Publishing Forum.

In my nomination statement I listed three outcomes for ePub that I’d like to see realized:

  • EPUB must thoughtfully embrace the dramatic evolution in web technology that is represented by HTML5. Though HTML5 offers some intriguing semantic tagging, the most pressing issue is native support for HTML5 multimedia. Similarly, EPUB should offer guidelines for developing books with interactive components using JavaScript, a practice currently discouraged (though not prohibited) by the extant specification.
  • Historical limitations in reading systems have led to the perception that EPUB has poor international character support. I have raised multiple tickets in the EPUB Working Group issue tracker related to better support of Asian languages. Implementers of ebooks and ereaders in non-Western languages should be provided with clear guidelines on how to correctly encode and style such books, before proprietary formats tailored to those languages chokes off global adoption of EPUB.
  • Improved outreach into the wider content community. While EPUB was designed with ebooks in mind, it is also an excellent generic container for any structured document. I believe there is opportunity to promote the use of EPUB for newspapers, magazines, journals, and other kinds of content, using the existing install base of EPUB readers. Sponsoring example documents and best practices would encourage developers from those industries to consider EPUB for a wider set of use cases than just ebooks.

Thank you to the member organizations, and I look forward to serving with the great team that’s already in place.

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7 Responses to “Threepress joins the IDPF board”

  1. Ben

    Congratulations. I hope you’ll be able to make progress on these 3 excellent goals.

    I might add one small one: eliminate the pointless NCX file and add a simple multilevel TOC element to the OPS “package” element. That NCX file is a huge pain in the butt, especially just to make a TOC.

  2. Florentino López

    Congratulations.

    “I believe there is opportunity to promote the use of EPUB for newspapers, magazines, journals, and other kinds of content, using the existing install base of EPUB readers. ”

    And comics? I don’t know a lot about EPUB, but I think that maybe it can be ideal format for digital comics.

    Sorry for my poor level of english.

  3. Liza Daly

    Yes, there have been some experiments with comics already. I’d like to see some sample implementations be made public.

  4. John Maxwell

    Excellent news! Congrats, Liza. I have considerably more faith in the future of ePub knowing you’re there.

  5. Gert Lems

    Great news, congratulations Liza!
    Wish you can lift the ePub standard up to the next level, so it can face the challenges that lie ahead.

  6. Paul Peeraerts

    That is good news, Liza! Congratulations! The ePub is in good hands!