I thought I’d lump news of a couple of items together for this post – two new tools for ebooks. One that will help Australian ebook readers, and one that could potentially be a game-changer in self-publishing more broadly.
The first – after Amazon released its Australian Kindle store in November last year, now those without a Kindle (or the various smartphone apps) will now be able to use its Cloud Reader web app in conjunction with the Australian Kindle store. Lifehacker AU explains here.
Its a small improvement, but given how low on the priority list AU seems to be for ebooks, I’ll take it. I see this as most useful for older readers who don’t want to invest in a Kindle and aren’t comfortable reading on their phone/tablet. They can now turn to their PC without messing with country settings to access Amazon.com
The second piece of technology could make a much bigger impact on ebooks worldwide. It has that kind of potential.
A developer in the States called David Bricker has developed a self-pub platform that allows folks to create interactive ebooks (or the regular sort, should you so desire) that they can sell and distribute freely on the web. They’re bilt with HTML so they can be read on any web-ready device.
Dave’s even created his own ebook standard format – <PubML>™ – that brings interactive ebooks closely in line with standard HTML5. What does all that mean? It means cool interactive websites = ebooks in Dave’s brave new world.