Book Publication File Format Architecture

As we develop into a digitized world, the need for paper ceases. Electronic devices are the modern way of reading books. May it be computers, mobile phones, or dedicated e-book readers like Amazon Kindle, Barnes & Noble’s Nook, etc., people are opting for electronic e-book readers rather than their paper counterpart, for the various features the devices provide. The ease of use and various features provided by them over pen and paper, makes these devices idle for word processing. Book authors have also started making their books available digitally. Earlier defined as “electronic version of a printed book”, but now many e-books exist without any printed equivalent, and for a good reason. E-books are more efficient than paper books from the various perspectives such as storage, transfer, cost, wider reach, instant delivery, and accessibility.

To support this development, various existing digital file formats were tested if they are suitable to publish e-books. While even a simple .txt file can be used to publish an e-book, it does not have any advanced features and isn’t sufficient to store extra information or provide interactivity. Hence many new file formats are developed specifically for this purpose. Most of these formats have special metadata tags and can store information such as Author, Publisher, Year, Edition, etc., reflected in paper books.

EPUB (Electronic Publication) developed by International Digital Publishing Forum (IDPF) has established itself as an industry-standard for book publication, being superior for book publication compared to the document standard PDF and others. While it is best available solution till date, it still has few shortcomings and lack many features, for which IPDF has been highly criticized.

A new file format is being proposed in this project, which overcomes the shortcomings in EPUB, along with providing many additional features.