What is Electronic Publishing?

Now that it is firmly established in the consumer sector, electronic publishing is beginning to demonstrate capabilities that challenge the boundaries between print and digital, still image and video, passive and interactive. Modern digital workflows support all manner of possible publication, from traditional print to digital, web, video, and even interactive content. Building in the full spectrum of potential publishing avenues — print, web, video, mobiles and tablets, and interactives — from the beginning is not only a way to streamline production overall, but also to increase the reach of the materials produced by leveraging the content over a wide range of media. Modern media companies have been at the vanguard of this conversion. Magazine writers, for example, will produce a piece so that it will work in the magazine, on the web, and in video — and the finished product may appear in any or all of those outlets. If the first revolution in electronic publishing was making publishing platforms accessible to anyone, the next phase is the linking of these platforms together to produce new combinations and new types of content via turn-key syndication tools. One such tool is Yahoo Pipes, and now more recently and prominently we are doing this with services like IFTTT (If This Then That). The power to syndicate content to multiple platforms easily is now within reach of those without significant programming experience.

INSTRUCTIONS: Enter your responses to the questions below. This is most easily done by moving your cursor to the end of the last item and pressing RETURN to create a new bullet point. Please include URLs whenever you can (full URLs will automatically be turned into hyperlinks; please type them out rather than using the linking tools in the toolbar).

Please "sign" your contributions by marking with the code of 4 tildes (~) in a row so that we can follow up with you if we need additional information or leads to examples- this produces a signature when the page is updated, like this: - Larry Larry Feb 8, 2012

(1) How might this technology be relevant to the educational sector you know best?

  • According to AAP’s publicly available stats, eBooks now account for 22% of the US book market. This change was accomplished in only 5 years. - michael.lambert michael.lambert Mar 1, 2013
  • - davidwdeeds davidwdeeds Mar 3, 2013 From the perspective of an international/independent school administrator, I can state that electronic publishing is not only going to save us big bucks in the short term, but it just might save our economic niche entirely. To compete against other schools we need to maintain that we have something special to offer, and this is going to be customized textbooks via electronic publishing. You've all heard the horror stories about Texas Board of Education science textbooks claiming that Adam and Eve rode dinosaurs around the Garden of Eden. But the quality factor involves much more than that.
  • This trend is perhaps the most relevant today, and so I expect it will continue to be among (if not THE) most relevant over the next five years. Blogging, e-books, electronic textbooks -- these are realities today, and we are still in the early days related to the adoption of e-readers, and the availability of affordable, usable digital textbooks. This is especially relavant (like it or not) because the private sector sees great short term growth potential in this area, and increasingly insistent supply will most likley influence demand in many places. Plus, with all of the new tableets flooding into schools, there are new opportunities to seel 'new' content to run on them. - mtrucano mtrucano Mar 4, 2013
  • This, it seems to me, will be the most significant impact which digital technology has on education: better texbooks - better because they have sound and moving images and are interactive.- paul paul Mar 5, 2013
  • This has been the hugest discussion lately here in the Brazilian school, especially with the advent of the tablets. We have pressuring publishers to advance with the creation of digital versions of the textbooks. We have been creating projects for students to publish for their tablets. And we have ourselves been researching the best tools to transform our own material into interactive digital formats. It is definitely a top trend. - cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Mar 5, 2013

(2) What themes are missing from the above description that you think are important?

  • - davidwdeeds davidwdeeds Mar 3, 2013 I've already mentioned cost savings, but there's also the language barrier. I taught for three years in China...for half our kids the existing textbooks were useless. We experimented with creating our own...simplified versions in English and Chinese...but we never had the time to do it properly. But these are specific examples...I see Electronic Publishing as a means to the end of Personalized Learning Networks and Adaptive Learning.
  • One theme that is missing here is really a risk, namely: that of technology lock-in becoming more acute. I talk with lots of educational publishers -- some of them no longer self-identify as publishers like they did in the past, but talk of themselves as 'learning services' companies. As digital content increasingly becomes a commodity in some palces, bundling this content within online assessment systems (which are not a commodity today -- far from it!) will be an increasingly attractive option for many firms, especially in places where there is a concomitant movement for more testing. The OER movement (to mentioned above) remains relevenat in many places, and can serve as an important foundation upon which other digital educational resources may be built. - mtrucano mtrucano Mar 4, 2013
  • The recent arrival of low-cost tablets (iPads, Kindles) with long battery life mean we are at a turning point in the impact which digital technology will have on education. But it won't be as revolutionary as many people claim. Better textbooks are nice and helpful, but that's all. They won't "transform" education; they won't constitute a "revolution".- paul paul Mar 5, 2013
  • One big issue that arises when talking with publishers is what business model they will adopt in order to sell us the digital versions of the textbooks. This has not been solved yet. - cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Mar 5, 2013
  • A huge area I see missing in the description is student created electronic publishing. The ease of creating e-books, the ability to rapidly combine and recombine media with text is going to alter the classroom landscape. Increasing electronic text books is going to impact the class, as a component of the other digital technologies that will significantly alter the educational landscape. - digitalroberto digitalroberto Mar 6, 2013

(3) What do you see as the potential impact of this technology on teaching, learning, or creative expression?

  • Students are creating their own iBooks and other digital books. They are now publishers, not just an author/writer. - michael.lambert michael.lambert Mar 1, 2013 This is a definite plus! Last year our students published two science journals using iBook author. - cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Mar 5, 2013 This is where the true benefit of this technology is going to be found. - digitalroberto digitalroberto Mar 6, 2013
  • Writing for an audience makes for a more authentic learning experience. The ability to publish will help students to engage more - mrskeeler mrskeeler Mar 2, 2013 Very true!- cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Mar 5, 2013
  • - davidwdeeds davidwdeeds Mar 3, 2013 This ties in with Open Content...my last choice...and Tacit Intelligence, too...because the ideal would be, e.g., Chinese international schools cooperating to create textbooks that students can actually use. And yes, this means that students would be contributing as well...who else knows better what other similar learners need?
  • Aside from the obvious potential for offering more outlets for creative expression, and for more opportunities to have creative expression catalyzed through increased exposure to additional information/perspectives/opinions/knowledge/resources, personal electronic publishing (whether via blogs, other posting of teacher presentations, or even just class assignments) also increases the transparency of (part of) the educational process. This opens up more potential opportunities for collaboration (between students, teachers, groups outside an individual school or classroom, ...), while at the same time sdignaling to other groups the potential to collaborate. This may mean there is greater potential for oversight (both a good and bad thing, perhaps), for researchers (who have a much larger digital paper trail to follow) and, potentiall, political meddling in the education process as well. - mtrucano mtrucano Mar 4, 2013Agreed. - cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Mar 5, 2013
  • add your response here

(4) Do you have or know of a project working in this area?

  • - davidwdeeds davidwdeeds Mar 3, 2013 Not quite yet, but once I get our Online Learning Program going, one of the goals is to also have teachers producing their own textbooks to accompany the courses. As I mentioned elsewhere, independent school folks (and parents!) are worried that the educational experience they offer is going to be compromised by online learning, so providing this kind of customized content is crucial to overcoming these objections.
  • The science journals produced by our students last year - in the Apple Store it is called eBand. We also have a Physical Education Basketball training manual called Basquetebol.
  • sadly, our district has an example of this kind of project that failed this year (see http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/virginia-schools-insider/post/fairfax-schools-to-buy-paper-textbooks-after-pixel-predicament/2012/12/11/c6759c42-43b3-11e2-8e70-e1993528222d_blog.html) For a combinations of reasons: technological readiness amoung the users/students/parent, communication, communitiy buy-in and that the technology product itselt(did not offer any NET affordances over the physical book). - jim.siegl jim.siegl Mar 6, 2013
  • I would also concider a tool like the Learning registry (Learningregistry.org) and example of a publication / syndication tool in this category - jim.siegl jim.siegl Mar 6, 2013

    - cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Mar 5, 2013

Please share information about related projects in our Horizon K-12 Project form.