EPUB file format has been widely adopted as a format for digital books. EPUB specification is very comprehensive, it defines:
- EPUB Container, XHTML files in a zip container.
- EPUB Package, a way to relate components of an EPUB to each other. This may include various metadata, index, table of contents and spine information.
- EPUB Canonical Fragment Identifier (CFI), a mechanism for describing a location within an EPUB.
- Media Overlays, which allow to synchronize audio tracks with text content in a book.
and various other technical standards. The latest spec is EPUB 3.1.
There are two omissions however, namely searching and pagination. We will describe searching in a future article and tackle pagination today.
Continue reading EPUB: Server-side pagination
I’d like to discuss a topic that’s not directly relevant to end users but is very important to businesses hosting and maintaining ActiveTextbook. Specifically, I’ll be talking about hosting and updating ActiveTextbook server software with Docker containers.
Docker is a containerization technology that has taken off in the last few years. The original ground work was laid by Google, but popularized by Docker Inc in 2013. Containerization is a standard way to package server side applications. Packaging all applications in the same manner allows for a efficient workflows and numerous other benefits: Continue reading ActiveTextbook with Docker Containers
Evident Point has partnered with Hypothes.is to bring annotation support to Readium and ActiveTextbook.
Hypothes.is is the leading online open platform for annotating the web, while Readium is the largest open source project for consuming ePUB documents.
The goal of this partnership is to bring ebook annotations capabilities to the web. This is what Laurent Le Meur of EDRLabs had to say in A partnership to bring open annotation to eBooks – EDRLab : Read more…
Readium 1 is now ancient in Internet terms, and there are a number of good reasons for a rewrite. However while that is happening it’s helpful to reuse some of the functionality from Readium 1 with Readium 2.
Although Evident Point was the initial contributor to Readium, there were many organizations and individuals that contributed to Readium over the years. Readium grew organically, to solve business needs at the time. This has resulted in a complex code base that is poorly documented and is difficult for newcomers to understand. To address these and other issues EDRLab announced the start of Readium 2 project at the end of 2016.
Along with resolving issues identified earlier, Readium 2 (R2) aims to define a “Web Publication Manifest”. Readium 1 (R1) was only designed to work with ePUB documents, while R2 is committed to the open web by engineering support for various document types at inception.
Readium 2 introduces a few architectural changes compared to Readium 1. Read more…
You’re probably familiar with OAuth2 already. OAuth2 is the technology behind the “Login with Facebook” or “Login with Google” buttons (and many others). OAuth2 is the best way to create a single sign on for two disparate web applications.
With single sign-on (SSO) users do not have to remember multiple passwords when logging into various applications. This becomes especially convenient with applications such as Blackboard, Canvas or Moodle where an instructor embeds an ActiveTextbook document in a course. When a user clicks the book link from within an LMS the user is transparently logged into ActiveTextbook without having to type a username and password, potentially without realizing that they have ended up in a separate application. Read more…
W3C has standardized annotations which is a step towards the right direction. Evident Point is working together with NYU Libraries, NYU Press, Readium and Hypothesis to bring annotation to EPUBs. By working together, this partnership will bring collaboration and cross-platform annotation to eBooks. Which is the next step in bringing hihg quality open annotation implementation to eBooks.
At the London Book Fair, Datalogics and SONY presented an Active Textbook-based READynamic reading system with URMS (User Rights Management System). It’s a new version of Active Textbook technology branded for DataLogics that offers the same interactive functionality and benefits of the original solution; and now with the integration of Sony DADC ’s URMS. The Sony DADC URMS, featured in READynamic, offers a powerful level of industry recognized security that will allow for full content protection, while offering the user flexible content control.
Evident Point has joined W3C community, namely W3C Publishing Business Group that will be working on development of EPUB and related Open Web Platform functionality going forward on a royalty – free (RF) basis. We also joined the EPUB Community Group, which has been as formed, the W3C / IDPF Combination was finalized, to ensure EPUB’s maintenance and advance EPUB’s further adoption.
W3C publishes standards (recommendations) for Web Annotations, which makes annotations first-class citizens of the web. This is an important step in making annotations available on the web, cross-applications and cross-platforms. ActiveTexbook comments are mostly inline with the spec, and plan to extend the support for application-independent annotations.
See more info about the spec here:
Active Textbook new version is a deep re-work of our original 1.0 platform, and includes deep architectural changes, as well as very significant changes in functionality , encompassing all components. From the user point of view, the most important changes are: Read more…
Datalogics presented the new version of ActiveTextbook under their brand name of READynamic Plus to a packed house at the Frankfurt Book Fair in Frankfurt, Germany this October. Their presentation, in partnership with SONY, presented a reader on the Active Textbook platform that supports SONY DRM for EPUB3. The integration of SONY’s User Rights Management System (URMS) DRM offers the security of a well-known DRM system for eBooks distributed via ActiveTextbook that is a recognized industry standard. We are very excited about where the interest generated by the FBF presentation could lead!
Evident Point is pleased to announce our partnership with Piron Corp for our flagship product, Active Textbook. Piron is our value-added reseller for Asia and the Middle East. Headquartered in New York, Piron is a leading provider of learning technology solutions. Evident Point and Active Textbook are a natural fit with Piron. Ankur Aggarwal, CEO of Piron Corp., explained that Active Textbook was the only platform he found that met his customers growing needs: supporting interactive digital content, enabling teachers to add additional custom material, supporting both PDF and EPUB based eBooks, and could be readily customized and integrated with various learning management systems.
Did you know the largest group of users for ActiveTextbook.com are from Romania? Each month around 45% of our visitors come to ActiveTextbook from ip addresses in Romania. The top book read is from the Department of Natural History and is a textbook on biology.
Alex Khramov from Bellingham Technical College and Ching Yue from Datalogics presented their perspectives on using Active Textbook at the Learning Impact Leadership Institute in San Antonio, TX. The conference brings together educators and technology leaders to discuss the practical issues digital learning. Ching introduced Active Textbook and discussed copyright management and integration possibilities, while Alex talked about his experience using Active Textbook to augment his online physics class.”
You can access the presentation at https://activetextbook.com/active_textbooks/10740
Today, Corey Selhost with Datalogics shows you how to create quizzes right in your book. Learn how quizzes work at http://blogs.datalogics.com/category/products/active-textbook/?subscribe=success#blog_subscription-2
Our partners at Datalogics have started a blog for everyone who is interested in learning more about Active Textbook. Whether you are just using ActiveTextbook.com, or you are interested in licensing the Active Textbook Server solution, there is some great information available for you. Check out Scott’s first post on Getting Started with Active Textbook. http://blogs.datalogics.com/2016/02/03/getting-started-with-active-textbook/#more-3254
Leo with Datalogics has kindly written a post on Creating and Using Groups in Active Textbook. Check out Leo’s post at: http://blogs.datalogics.com/2016/03/15/creating-and-using-groups-in-active-textbook-2/
Today, Michelle Obama officially launched the Open eBooks app.
Open eBooks is best described as a “library of opportunity.” Targeting youth in need, Open eBooks makes thousands of popular and award-winning titles freely accessible to children and adolescents from low-income households.
As Readium experts, Evident Point began working on this project with the New York Public Library last summer. With Readium at its core, the app allows children and teens to easily access the full text and illustrations of thousands of titles, which were generously contributed by publishers.
Many thanks to Juan, Raduz, and Ben for their work on this great project.
For more information, please see the official press release from the White House: Now Available: A Library of Opportunity https://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2016/02/23/now-available-library-opportunity.
Evident Point is pleased to work with the New York Public Library on the Open eBooks Initiative. The initiative seeks to make eBooks freely accessible to low-income children and adolescents. Publishers are making thousands of books available through the Open eBooks app, including classics and popular contemporary works. The Open eBooks app and the associated Library Simplified app both are built on Readium
Evident Point is pleased to announce our distribution partnership with Datalogics for our flagship product—Active Textbook. Datalogics is the premier source for PDF and eBook technologies, and we have always enjoyed working with them as a technology partner. We are very excited to have this opportunity to bring Active Textbook to new markets.
For more information please see the full press release.
Active Textbook co-sponsored the Internet Marketing Mastery Conference in Vancouver. This conference attracted some of the most successful marketers, publishers and thought leaders in the internet marketing industry.
Aditya and Tiffinie had a great time getting to know local entrepreneurs and professionals who were looking for a simple and easy way to share their story and take their audience from reading to interacting! One of the tweets that was shared multiple times by the conference attendees was:
“@activeTextbook is going to #Disrupt the PDF and file sharing system #IMMastery #tech #innovation“
Tiffinie, from the Active Textbook team, co-presented Create [&] Learn at BCLA Connect, the annual conference for the BC Libraries Association. In the session we discussed why Richmond Public Library decided to use Active Textbook as the basis for Create [&] Learn, and we demonstrated how the platform works. There was a lively discussion on the future plans for Create [&] Learn and the endless possibilities of what communities can create and share.
RM Education, the biggest electronic school book distributor in UK, expanded its use of Active Textbook by adopting Active Textbook apps for all mobile reading. This allows students, teachers and, parents to enjoy reflowable content from the comfort of their mobile devices whether online or offline!
Young Drivers of Canada is now using its own private Active Textbook server for driver education. A custom platform was developed for Young Drivers of Canada to expand and support YD’s Anytime, Anywhere eLearning Driver Training.
The Active Textbook landing page was re-designed to enhance our users’ experience, and become mobile friendly.
Richmond Public Library released the second phase of Create [&] Learn. C&L is based upon Active Textbook but was customized specifically for libraries to provide an easy-to-use community publishing platform.
RM Education, the biggest electronic schoolbook distributor in the UK, switched to using Active Textbook for eBook publishing and viewing. RM wanted to expand the functionality of their existing PDF reader and offer an ePUB reader as well. RM chose Active Textbook because it enabled the creation of reports that tracked reading sessions, and could therefore provide feedback to teachers and allow them to customise their teaching to support individual student needs.
Evident Point designed an ePUB3 reader for Txtr, a German eReader and eBook provider.
Active Textbook reader is now used by ICBC to help prepare you to pass the learner’s (Class 7L) license. We built a reader for ICBC, which was based on Readium and Active Textbook, we also converted their driver training manuals from PDF to ePUB.
The Learn to Drive Smart manual is now viewable as a reflowable document on most mobile phones and include practice quizzes, so users can study while in transit, at home or outdoors!
Active Textbook is installed as the main publishing platform for the courses and learning management system at the Corporate University of Sberbank.
Sberbank is the largest Russian retail bank in Russia and Eastern Europe with 242,000 employees.
Check out our new version of Active Textbook with new user interface enhancement. Creation of quizzes is now via the same modal as hotspots was before. This new overlay feature allows authors to inlay images and text into uploaded documents.
Users can now preview images and view video clips/audio clips in any media library by either double clicking a media item or clicking on the preview hover button
Get the most out of your Active Textbook from now on and enjoy reading more with these new features.
Indigos bookstore is a first-of-a-kind source of free & paid educational materials from all around the world for students at any age.
To learn more about Indigos: indigos.com
If you are looking for top rated eBooks, look no further!
The CHOICE e-Collection (CeC) developed by Publishers Row, is the first collection of e-books to consist exclusively of titles reviewed by CHOICE. Soon you will be able to purchase CHOICE e-Collection (CeC) eBooks through ActiveTextbook.
Catholic International Education Office (OIEC) is using ActiveTextbook as their main publishing platform for distributing their books.
OIEC, an international organization headquartered in Lausanne, Switzerland, delivers learning materials to 210,000 schools and 44 million pupils all over the world.
See their publishing page at Tralcom ActiveTextbook.
4CIO ActiveTextbook is a collective project of the club for IT directors 4CIO and an expert view of the IT professionals at development of companies and technologies. 4CIO IT experts will be using ActiveTextbook publishing platform as their professional development.
Dmitry Izmestiev, vice-president on innovations of the Group of companies LANIT: “Advantage of electronic work books, created on the basis of ActiveTextbook are university and multimedia. Such book is easy to read from any device, because there are no limits on operation systems. It is possible to add various video materials, graphics, references on different resources and inquiries quickly. High level and newness of the Company’s developments is approved by the fact that top-managers of large companies – experts of IT-sphere – have chosen such solution from LANIT for their projects”
To learn more about 4CIO ActiveTextbook, visit here.
Film Connection Institute is using ActiveTextbook for their online learning programs and interacting with students. The Recording Radio and Film Connection (RRF) provides one on one mentor/apprentice classes in film directing, film producing, screen writing, editing, and general film production.
More News on RRF and their exciting projects with ActiveTextbook are coming soon!
Furthermore, you are able to look up words using built-in dictionary within Active Textbook provided by Wordnik. Sign up today or sign in with your Facebook account with just one click away.
Get the most out of your Active Textbook from now on and enjoy reading more with these new features.
Evident Point is pleased to announce its partnership with Lambda Solutions in order to enhance the teaching-learning process. Lambda Solutions is a full service Moodle integrator that provides highly customized solutions for clients across Canada and United States.
This effortless integration permits instructors and learners to easily access their selected Active Textbooks within each specific course on Moodle and be able to view, manage, and share their content. Use this efficient solution to improve your students’ learning outcomes.
We customize the Active Textbook and Moodle integration solution packages to meet your needs.
Please contact us via firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
The North Vancouver School District has been journeying with us since our beta versions to bring Active Textbook to some of their students and teachers. A group of highly dedicated and innovative teachers, motivated to reach their students through technology, are pioneering the effort to compose and deliver their own interactive learning modules through Active Textbook. To an audience where point-and-click is a norm, they are meeting students in their terms and bringing learning closer. Read more…
Last month, the B.C. government released that they will be developing open textbooks for 40 post-secondary courses to be used as early as the next school year. This is great news! From the first day of talking to our potential users, we knew that one of the most poignant issue for educators is acquiring the source textbooks which they can share with their students. Over the last couple years, we have witnessed the Open Educational Resources movement gain traction and grow. This means that teachers using Open Educational Resources can forego the complicated process of acquiring the license to share digital copies of the textbooks online and the costs associated with it. The vision of equipping teachers with these resources pairs well with Active Textbook since it could be a great platform for remixing and distributing these resources. ActiveTextbook.com could facilitate courses driven primarily with these resources by lending its course-structured nature for educators to group relevant resources and deliver these to students. We hope and expect great synergy from these movements and we are especially excited for this new development in B.C.!
Have you ever seen a “Choose Your Own Adventure” book? It’s a game book where the reader gets to assume the role of the protagonist in the book and make decisions. The book will direct the reader to page X for decision A or page Y for decision B and the reader gets to play out the plot. It is designed so that, once you make a decision and flip to a certain page, it’s not easy to go back to the page you were on before. This is exactly what was happening with Active Textbook with our efforts to help people navigate freely around the book. Bookmarks, hotspot summary, and table of contents were focused on bringing people to specific pages without a way back. This just wouldn’t do! In the newest update of the software, we’ve added a feature to track your previous page so that you can go back to any place in the book as easily as you left it. Now you can flip pages without fear!
The Active Viewer is now fully functional on Android tablets. During our planning stage, we interviewed potential users asking them which tablet they would like to see Active Textbook on. While some were decisive in their answers, others were on the fence because they weren’t sure which devices their students and readers would use. We realized that we can’t expect all of our users to be technology trend forecasters in the ever-changing tablet market and decided that we would strive to compatible with all major platforms. Using the HTML5 technologies, we first made sure that our Active Viewer could be used on the iPad and recently polished off a few features to be functional on Android tablets (using Chrome) as well.
The Lone Ranger attitude for learning was never intended in education. Classes are filled with peers and instructors working together to create an engaging learning atmosphere. So why should online learning be any different? Active Textbook is looking to bring this to the users in simple terms. Students and teachers will be able to share their ideas, ask questions and discuss issues with the new Comment Tool. The Comment Tool is just one of the many new features included in the latest release of Active Textbook! Users can add comments to any part of the book and join in the discussions which are already taking place among their classmates. We also added a Comment Summary Panel to provide an overview of all the comments in the Active Textbook. It’s simple in concept and easy to use!
The international e-Learning exhibition and conference, eLearnExpo, in Moscow was a smashing success! Amongst the 80 presentations made by both local and international experts, the Active Textbook team was presented with the best debut award. The features and sleek design of the new Active Textbook left the crowd thoroughly impressed. More details are available here.
A new version of Active Textbook has finally been released! With no download necessary, the new Active Textbook is now a completely web-based application utilizing HTML5 technologies. Equipped with a sleeker design, social learning tools, as well as cross-browser and cross-platform compatibility, the new Active Textbook aims to improve digital learning for students and teachers worldwide.
Active Textbook was introduced to students taking a course on educational technology at UBC (Department of Curriculum & Pedagogy). After a short presentation, students were encouraged to create their own digital curriculum materials with Active Textbook. During a follow up survey more than 60 percent of all participants indicated that they are “Very likely” to use Active Textbook in their work as teachers.
Active Textbook is about to have a new user interface which looks sleek and modern. Its elegant simplicity will make it easier for users to enhance their digital documents with interactive content. You can look forward to seeing our brand-new appearance in the near future.
The Active Textbook team will be exibiting the latest version of our software at Catalyst For Science on October 21st and 22nd. Active Textbook is proud to participate and to be a part of Catalyst For Science directive to gather information on teacher reviewed and classroom tested science-based resources.
Active Textbook was recently featured at the CUEBC and Catalyst For Science conferences. Our team demonstrated the Active Textbook platform for teachers and school district representatives. There is a strong need for technologies that enable teachers to design and distribute digital courseware. Active Textbook attracted a lot of attention for that reason! Education professionals appreciated how Active Textbook is easy to use and has powerful authoring and publishing functionality. New contacts established during CUEBC and Catalyst will allow us to bring Active Textbook to new schools and school districts.