E-book formatting is a challenge, as I’ve written about in previous posts. Later this month, Flipick is launching a tool that might make it easier.

From their press release:

Flipick is a new online service that allows book publishers and design shops to produce their own ePub3 compatible eBooks directly from within Adobe InDesign.

This new service is quick, and capable of producing rich, informative and interactive text in an utmost cost-effective manner. Flipick is expected to be popular with publishers creating fixed-layout eBooks such as K-12 and scientific textbooks, storybooks and graphic novels in a format that dynamically adapts to disparate reading environments.

Let’s hope it does what it says. The categories of books mentioned above have been slow to move to e-format, for obvious reasons. If the Flipick plug-in works as advertised, this could be a very good thing for the e-reading world, without, I think, damaging the paper world too much. The types of books above do lend themselves to paper formats, but if readable e-versions can be produced for those who want them, it should be good for everyone.


  1. Paul, something tells me the main users of this, for a while at least, will be publishers selling books from their own sites, not from Amazon or others. Publishers like O’Reilly, although I’m sure they’ve got their own tools.

  2. @juli

    Consider Paul’s opinion to be widely shared. Adobe’s management of EPUB is a joke and it is eventually doing a lot of harm to the standard…

    Because they –wrongly — thought EPUB could just be an export option, it is really really bad. And because it is bad, it has a huge impact on the whole ecosystem, with eReading apps developers having to deal with the unmanageable. As a matter of consequence, those devs have to alter styles, and in some cases, alter the entire file so that it is not unreadable.

    InDesign even export styles that Adobe’s own RMSDK doesn’t manage. That is pathetic, especially as their RMSDK is used by the vast majority of apps, vendors, etc.
    In other words, InDesign isn’t even adapted to the RMSDK which prevails while the same company is making both of them.

    Adobe and its evangelists are boasting they offer the best tools? Concerning EPUB, they are just screwing the whole ecosystem.

    And designers and publishers are not so much guilty in this case, they just don’t know. It’s Adobe’s fault because it is telling them there is no ebook problem, just export and voila. Well, it is definitely not, and ebooks have their own design requirements. Had Adobe’s been honest, it should have released an EPUB prod app with inDesign compatibility. And now, what are they doing? Building a bridge between InDesign EPUB and dreamweaver… It’s like admitting InDesign failed to manage EPUB but still making the bad decisions: ebooks are not an hybrid of print and web. Never.

    So please Adobe, stop making harm and start being serious about ebooks. At the moment, you are just an insane problem which is pushing the EPUB standard to its long and winding death.

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