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Digital publishing

Many publishers use EPUB to bring digital content to their readers. EPUB is built from Web technologies, but publishing uses the Web for so much more, from everyday matters of communication and marketing to learning management systems and online journals. Nevertheless publications are still not first-class citizens of the Web. EPUB exists in silos, somewhat disconnected from the Web. Long texts make special demands on readers. We expect to read books and publications even while offline. We hope to share publications, save them, keep them. We expect a kind of permanence to publications, which we don’t typically expect of web sites. Publishing@W3C, a dedicated activity at the W3C, works to identify and solve these problems. We want publications on the Web to be more capable, more beautiful, more accessible, and easier.

As part of this activity, a separate Publishing Working Group has been set up at W3C to enable all publications — with all their specificities and traditions — to become first-class entities on the Web. The group aims at the development of Web Publications: a collection of (Web) resources, organized together through a manifest into a single logical work with a default reading order. The group concentrates on the development of a generic framework, with a particular attention to specific publishing areas, like audiobooks, Mangas, or scholarly publications.

Ivan Herman, from CWI, played a seminal role in the creation of Publishing@W3C a few years ago, and is now its technical leader in cooperation with core players of the Web as well as the publishing industries.



  • T. Clark; A. de Waard, I. Herman, E. Hovy The Future of Research Communications. Dagstuhl Reports, 1(8): pp. 29-52, 2011 .
  • P. Bourne, T. Clark, R. Dale, A. de Waard, I. Herman, E. Hovy, D. Shotton Improving Future Research Communication and e-Scholarship: A Summary of Findings. Informatik Spektrum, 35(1): pp. 56-58, 2012 .
  • J. Starr, E. Castro, M. Crosas, M. Dumontier, R.R. Downs, R. Duerr, H. Laurel, M. Haendel, I. Herman, S. Hodson, J. Hourclé, J.E. Kratz, J. Lin, L.H. Nielsen, A. Nurnberger, S. Pröll, A. Rauber, S. Sacchi, A.P. Smith, M. Taylor, T. Clark Achieving human and machine accessibility of cited data in scholarly publications. PeerJ Computer Science, (): pp. , 2015 .
  • I. Herman, M. Gylling Bridging the Web and Digital Publishing. The Journal of Electronic Publishing, 18(1): pp. , 2015 .