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Ebook Basics: Understanding HTML, XML, CSS, ePub, for beginners
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Ebook Basics: Understanding HTML, XML, CSS, ePub, for beginners

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This is a very simple and basic introduction to ket technologies that are used in ebooks and the web. It's intended to give people with little technical knowledge a basic, conceptual understanding on ...

This is a very simple and basic introduction to ket technologies that are used in ebooks and the web. It's intended to give people with little technical knowledge a basic, conceptual understanding on how these important technologies work.
At the end of the presentation, there's also a quick, 5-step way to build a website free using WordPress.com.
By Martin Taylor, Director of the New Zealand Digital Publishing Forum.

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Ebook Basics: Understanding HTML, XML, CSS, ePub, for beginners Ebook Basics: Understanding HTML, XML, CSS, ePub, for beginners Presentation Transcript

  • Under the hood – Getting techie
  • What is an ebook?
    • Digital Publishing’s goal: Create once, re-use many times
    • To work effectively ebooks today need to:
      • Support reflowable text
      • Ideally support scalable images (SVG)
      • Be compact and contained in a single file
      • Simple layout (often displayed in black and white), easily readable
      • Be in a suitable format for e-reader devices
  • Under the hood
    • Most ebooks today are built on a foundation of (X)HTML / XML , the language of the web
    • Common formats today: mobi, azw, ePub, PDF
    • PDF is adapting with announcement (Feb 09) of reflowable PDF aimed at mobile devices
    • Digital Rights Management
      • DRM or DRM-free ? A key decision for publishers and the industry
  • Under the hood - HTML/XML Chapter 1 What is an Ebook? An ebook is a book without pages. HTML describes the presentation of your book (or web page). For instance:
  • Your book is 'marked up' to show the e-reader how to display it <html> <body> <h1> Chapter 1 </h1> <h2> What is an Ebook? </h2> <p> An ebook is a book without pages. </p> </body> </html>
  • This is what it looks like when viewed in the browser / e-reader Chapter 1 What is an Ebook? An ebook is a book without pages.
  • XML describes the structure <chapter> <title> What is an Ebook? </title> <paragraph> An ebook is a book without pages. </paragraph> </chapter>
  • Using CSS to style your document
    • CSS = 'Cascading Style Sheets'
    • Apply a designated style to the underlying HTML document
    • The power of CSS comes from being able to restyle an entire document by just changing its style sheet
      • “ Create once, re-use multiple times”
      • Can allow the same content to be formatted to suit entirely different outputs – eg printer, PC, mobile phone
  • So, this HTML <html> <body> <h1> Chapter 1 </h1> <h2> What is an Ebook? </h2> <p> An ebook is a book without pages. </p> </body> </html>
  • Combined with this CSS ... body {color: black} h1 {font-family: “comic sans ms”, arial, 'sans serif'} h2 {color: red} p {text-align:center}
  • Produces this style variation Chapter 1 What is an Ebook? An ebook is a book without pages.
  • Metadata – data about the ebook
    • As well as creating the book, we need to describe it for selling purposes
      • Eg ISBN, author, price, availability, blurb, links to cover image, etc
    • E-tailing is driving a need for standardised metadata as computers manage more of the process
    • ONIX ( ON line I nformation E x change) is the book industry standard
      • An XML standard, 31 core metadata elements
  • Bonus : A free website in 5 steps and 15 minutes No HTML coding needed
  • Bonus : A free website in 5 steps
    • Go to WordPress.com
    • Sign Up for a free account then Login
    • Go to Appearances | Themes
      • Choose a theme (site design) and Activate it
    • Go to Settings | General
      • Add your site’s Title and Tagline
    • Go to Posts | Add New
      • Write your first story and Publish!
  • Add PAGES for static information
  • Instant website (cont.d)
    • (Optional) Go to Pages | Add New
      • Write pages for static info (eg Home, About Us, Contact Us)
    • Go to Settings | Reading
      • For Front Page Display select A static page
      • Choose a Page for the Front page and for the Posts page (ie your news/blog articles)
    • Save Changes . You’re done!
  • So there it is … in case you’d ever wondered 
  • Thanks! Martin Taylor web: digitalpublishing.org.nz email: martin@digitalstrategies.co.nz blog: activitypress.com/ ereport