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Tools of Change for Publishing

Feeling Rudderless with the Loss of O’Reilly’s TOC? Consider This
May 10, 2013 | 9:37 pm

Tools of ChangeMuch conversation and virtual space has been devoted over the last week to the announcement by O’Reilly that they are discontinuing the Tools of Change conference. The announcement stunned many, and lamentation abounded at the loss of what had been, for many, a forum for hearing new ideas and, equally important, an arena for networking and maintaining significant ongoing professional connections. As the producers of the Publishing Business Conference & Expo, one of the events in the same space as TOC, we have long respected our colleagues at O’Reilly. It might be expected that we would jump into the fray and exclaim...

BREAKING: O’Reilly Media Retiring the Tools of Change Conference and TOC Blog
May 2, 2013 | 10:15 pm

O'Reilly MediaEarlier today, O'Reilly Media founder Tim O'Reilly announced in a blog post that after seven years of hosting the Tools of Change for Publishing conference, a digital publishing event attended annually by many of the biggest names and most important members of the industry, the conference is being officially retired. Also folding along with the conference is the popular TOC blog, which, like its namesake series of events, is considered a crucial portion of most every digital publishing professional's media diet. The rationale behind the cancellation of Tools of Change seems largely to be one of financial priority. In the aforementioned blog...

At TOC, a Tempest of paradigm-challenging ideas on what an e-book can be and do
February 15, 2013 | 7:07 pm

Fabienne Riener, Chief Operating Officer of SourcefabricO wonder! How many goodly books are there here! How beauteous publishing is! I attended the O’Reilly Tools of Change for Publishing (TOC) conference this past Tuesday and learned about a topic that captivates me: new forms that books are able to take when they are conceived as e-books. There is so much creative work being done in this area that I often want to hold it up to show those who think we are an industry in turmoil. An industry in transition, yes, but with many bright minds at work moving us in exciting new directions. Here’s a quick look at some highlights: Fabienne...

Morning Links — New ideas from TOC 2013, and more
February 13, 2013 | 8:00 am

TOC Tools of Change logoFive Slightly Unexpected Tips For Self-Published Authors to Find Success (DBW) The Crazy Plan to Save Barnes & Noble (DBW) "Used Ebooks" Hurts My Brain (Book Riot) Little, Brown's NOVL Approach to Reaching Readers Online (Publisher's Weekly) Is "Discoverability" Even A Problem? (Brett Sandusky) Kindle Daily Deals: The Informationist by Taylor Stevens (and 3 others)...

Our upcoming TOC 2013 coverage
February 12, 2013 | 12:39 pm

Author Revolution Day O'Reilly's Tools of Change for Publishing 2013O'Reilly's annual Tools of Change for Publishing conference just got underway this morning at the New York Marriott Marquis in Manhattan. And while we unfortunately weren't able to make it New York for the event's first day, we will be on the scene, tweeting and reporting live, throughout days two and three. Today's big TOC draw, of course, is the (day-long) event being referred to as Author (R)evolution Day, which may very well end up being considered a revolutionary event in and of itself; the focus is on independent authors and the swiftly-growing self-publishing scene. As the TOC site describes it,...

PDF is most popular format, PC is most popular reader for O’Reilly e-book customers
March 23, 2012 | 9:15 am

O’Reilly TOC general manager and occasional TeleRead contributor Joe Wilkert has a piece up on O’Reilly Radar looking at a survey O’Reilly recently conducted of its e-book customers, asking on what devices and in which formats they planned to do most of their e-book reading. Wilkert reports that the most popular non-PC e-reading device, with a 25% share, was the iPad—but 46% of those who responded said that their primary device for viewing O’Reilly e-books was their PC, and about half of the people who responded said PDF was their format of choice. When...

First “Mini Tools of Change” conference this Wednesday in Portland
July 25, 2011 | 8:14 am

O'Reilly Media is trying out a new smaller, traveling version of its hugely popular Tools of Change conferences, called miniTOC. The first one takes place in Portland, Oregon this Wednesday the 27th, and will explore current trends in digital publishing from a local perspective: miniTOC Portland provides an opportunity for Portland's publishing and tech luminaries to share how they are forging ahead in the publishing/tech/content space. The best and brightest of PDX's art, business, craft and technology leaders will be gathered for a day of collaboration and connecting around their shared love of the bookish. If you're in the area and want...

Metadata, not ebooks, can save publishing
August 5, 2010 | 7:40 am

images.jpgHere's another one from Tools of Change. It's an important subject and I hear over and over at seminars, and read over and over in articles, that publishers are not paying enough attention to the interrelationship between metadata and digital publishing. This is from an article by Nick Ruffilo: Why won't ebooks save publishing? E-books represent a format, just like hardcovers and paperbacks. Because they are a different format, they require different pricing. Things that are consumed and priced differently do open themselves up to a new market but unless that new consumption method is revolutionary, the growth (new readers) to...

Ricoh Innovations adds e-footnotes without QR codes
July 12, 2010 | 5:08 pm

french rev 2 Last month, I mentioned Ubimark’s publication of a print edition of Around the World in 80 Days with “e-footnotes”—QR codes that can be scanned by a free iPhone app to turn into links to webpages with additional content. Now Tools of Change reports that Ricoh Innovations is set to allow publishers to do the same thing with no QR codes required. According to Jamey Graham, Distinguished Research Engineer at Ricoh, RI's technology is similar to that of QR codes, but uses the natural patterns of an object or a page as opposed to a barcode....

Publishing books with WordPress
May 20, 2010 | 11:58 am

wordpress-logo On O’Reilly’s Tools of Change blog, Hugh McGuire—the co-developer of the Book Oven on-line content management system for publishing, among other things—explains why a better publishing platform might actually be made from Wordpress, of all things. McGuire started Book Oven with the goal of building books “in the cloud”, so that online collaboration would be easier, and the book would be more portable to different devices. But while pitching his system he encountered suggestions that “It would be great to have a tool that’s as easy to use as Wordpress.” That started him thinking. Wordpress is familiar to most writers...

Kassia Kroszer’s observations on Tools of Change
March 1, 2010 | 1:15 pm

booksquare-logo[1] Kassia Kroszer at Booksquare has a great wrap-up of the Tools of Change conference, in which she talks about her own and others’ presentations, links to interesting blog articles, and shares some general thoughts on the state of the e-publishing industry at this point. There are far too many interesting observations to summarize, so I’ll just pick out a few to mention here. Early on, Kroszer points out that “all publishing is already digital”—insofar as manuscripts are by and large now submitted electronically, rather than as typewritten or handwritten pages. But publishers are still using an old-fashioned...

Richard Nash discusses ‘Publishing 2.0’
February 27, 2010 | 8:15 am

image A couple of weeks ago, I saw a post on O’Reilly’s Tools of Change website that I wanted to cover, but it was so long that I never actually got around to looking at it in the detail I needed, until now. Fortunately, the article is still no less timely. This piece is an interview with Richard Nash, a theater-director-turned-publisher who has now launched a “social publishing” start-up called Cursor. Nash talks about Cursor and its goals, then goes on to discuss some of the broader implications of publishing meeting the kind of “Web 2.0” interactivity that is...

TOC Report: my thoughts on how TOC went this year
February 25, 2010 | 1:35 pm

toccon-bug.gifI'm back from an exhausting time of trying to cover TOC for you guys and here are a few thoughts about my overall impression of the conference. TOC is a rather odd duck in that I don't think it quite knows who is eating its eggs. It is a mixture of low level, in the trenches, stuff and very high level thought pieces. This makes many of the sessions suitable for the worker bees and mid-level managers (for example those on copyright, the workshops on the first day). The dichotomy comes in when TOC goes with its keynotes....

Final TOC Report: Keynote, The future of digital distribution and ebook marketing
February 24, 2010 | 3:04 pm

toccon-bug.gifTim O"Reilly, founder and CEO of O'Reilly media. Challenge is not to build the coolest and most enhanced ebooks. The publisher will never be a winner in a technology race. Innovations do come from publishers, but that's not the heart of what publishers do. Publishers' job is to do for authors those things that authors can't do for themselves. Be creative, but remember what you really do. Which is often the boring stuff. If not good at those things then someone will take your place. It's not easy to be found in this new world. Big haystack. All of...

TOC Report: Keynote, 1,001 Arabian rights; digital publishing and its role in exposing non-English languages
February 24, 2010 | 2:35 pm

toccon-bug.gifRamy Habeeb, established first Arabic language ebook house. Arab publishing market behind western publishing, and its lessons also applicable to other emerging economies. 60,000 titles published every year. Arabic market is the size of the US. Problems: distribution is still very primitive, In Egypt, 80% of books only available within 5 kilometers of publishing house. Censorship is still a problem. Three kinds: on purpose, self censorship and unconscious censorship. No viable OCR solution available in Arabic. International standards are a problem. Nobody uses ISBN numbers. They have them but don't use them or any other international standard. Industry...

TOC Report: Keynote, Rethinking the role of funding academic book publishing
February 24, 2010 | 2:01 pm

toccon-bug.gifFrances Pinter, Bloomsbury Academic. Startup academic publisher. Publishing monographs in academia, an endangered species. 1980 sold 3,000 copies of typical monograph, now sell about 350. Challenge: how do we get to a point where we can sustainably publish long form monographs. (Discussion covers only social sciences and humanities) Academics still want independent verification of quality, editing, typesetting, curation, branding. Pressures on academic community: expanding academic ecosystem and need more publishing services, governments and foundation wants to see impact for research they are funding. Pressures on academic publishers: technology driven changes require investment in time of global...

TOC Report: Results of Book Industry Study Group consumer survey
February 24, 2010 | 1:01 pm

toccon-bug.gifAngela Bole, BSIG; Kelly Gallagher, Bowker Consumer attitudes to ebook reading. Ongoing project. Very fresh data, completed survey last week and this is the first release to the public. Looked a print book readers who are moving to ebooks. Respondents had to have read an ebook. 95% confidence level, about 44K respondents. Purchasing behavior: #1 reason to buy an ebook is affordability 34% acquired their first ebook within the last sixth months Purchasers of ebooks are buying fewer hardbacks and paperbacks 47% read ebooks on a desktop, 32% on the Kindle, 11% on iPhone, 10% on iPod Touch, 9% on...

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