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Breaking The Page

Transforming Books and the Reading Experience

By Peter Meyers
10-minute read
Audio available
Breaking The Page: Transforming Books and the Reading Experience by Peter Meyers

Breaking The Page (2014) explores the new possibilities ebooks offer to readers. Throughout these blinks, you’ll learn about the differences between traditional books and ebooks, and why we need to rethink what a book is in order to make the most of the powers of the digital wor(l)d.

  • Publishers, editors and authors
  • People interested in the future of writing and publishing
  • Anyone who has felt dissatisfied after reading an ebook

Peter Meyers has written for the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Wired and the Village Voice. He founded the company Digital Learning Interactive and is a pioneer in multimedia textbook publishing.

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Breaking The Page

Transforming Books and the Reading Experience

By Peter Meyers
  • Read in 10 minutes
  • Audio & text available
  • Contains 6 key ideas
Breaking The Page: Transforming Books and the Reading Experience by Peter Meyers
Synopsis

Breaking The Page (2014) explores the new possibilities ebooks offer to readers. Throughout these blinks, you’ll learn about the differences between traditional books and ebooks, and why we need to rethink what a book is in order to make the most of the powers of the digital wor(l)d.

Key idea 1 of 6

Ebooks can improve the reading experience in some genres.

Do you read ebooks? If you do, you know how different they are to “normal” books.

At first, many thought that ebooks would be just another fad. But now it’s safe to say they’re here to stay. But while they won’t dethrone classical books, they will begin to dominate in some areas.

One reason ebooks have become so popular is that the reader’s attention nowadays is scarce: he wants the most relevant information and he wants it now. But traditional books aren’t the easiest to skim through, and it’s difficult to hone in on the information you want.

Things are different with ebooks. If designed in the right way, they make it much easier for the reader to search and access the content he wants. If, for example, different formatting is used to highlight the most important parts of the text, even hurried readers know what to look at immediately.

However, ebooks aren’t well-suited to all forms of content. Fiction, whose content is mostly dependent on text, will largely stay in the traditional format. But non-fiction books will be able to take advantage of all the new opportunities that ebooks offer.

In traditional books, there is relatively little flexibility outside of arranging blocks of text. Although it’s possible to add illustrations to certain pages, it’s harder to do and the options are limited.

That’s not the case with ebooks – in fact, there’s the opposite problem. On the screen, large chunks of text are hard to read and follow, so you need to add more media – videos, photos, designs, and so on – to make the book more readable. Ebooks are thus an exciting medium for authors who play with layout or who have skills in areas other than writing.

They are also a work in progress. In the following blinks, we’ll examine the state of ebooks today and see what opportunities they hold for the future.

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