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The electronic book. Fantasized about for decades by sci-fi authors and readers alike, yet one of the last analog mediums to enter the digital realm. Why is that?

What is it about a book that makes it so difficult to translate the experience into a digital medium?

I think it has to do with the way we define a book, and how broad that definition really is. The problem is that we’re looking for one solution to the digital book problem, one answer that packages our bookshelves into bits and bytes. The ePUB standard has been proposed as that answer. But it isn’t the complete answer, and I’m not sure it ever can be.

The things we today call books have fundamental differences that can’t be reconciled by any one standard that’s currently been proposed. Why is that? What’s missing? And how can we fix it?

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I’m going admit something to you right now, please don’t think less of me for it. I’ve never really used an RSS reader on my Mac. I didn’t even have a Google Reader account until I had the original iPad in my hands.

I read the news online, sure, but normally in a sligthly haphazard and meandering way; drifting through a sea of news sites and magazines, never commiting to read past the first break.

The iPad has changed me. Could it change the way we read, forever?

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Apple has seen an unprecedented amount of success with its latest major product line, the iPad. Some estimates put the iPad with a rounded 100% market share, their competitors aren’t even on the board.

As we all know, Apple got there first – in terms of modern tablets – by launching their first product in April of 2010. However, it’s evident that even now, with many tablets on the market, Apple is still leading the pack.

Your choice in tablet probably comes down to personal brand loyalty. Chances are that, if you’re reading this site, you’re somehow interested in the technology industry, and probably have good knowledge of the goings on.

Therefore, from our perspective, choosing Google or Apple is probably up to some sort of brand loyalty influenced by the devices we already own (for example, a Mac user is probably more likely to buy an iPad). However, the average consumer who wants a tablet doesn’t necessarily have any underlying loyalty to a certain brand that dictates their choice. So, why is the iPad the device of choice? What’s behind its insane success in comparison to its competitors?

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In the wake of the comScore report on Smartphone market share there has been a blinding flurry of speculation over the future of the Smartphone market. Who will the major players be in two years time? What about five years? How does the information on market share influence the primary platforms that developers will target?

The major hot button topic arising from this report was surrounding the rise of Android and the stagnation of iOS (or decline, depending on who you talk to). While talking in circles about the difference between market share and profitability, and baiting fans loyal to each respective platform, might help drive traffic, it’s not particularly relevant to the situation of the end-user.

One of the most significant discussions that will come out of this furore will be over the desirability of certain platforms for developers. If Android continues growing at its current pace, will all the good iOS developers jump ship? With cross-platform apps, will it even matter?

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When the iPad was announced for the first time on January 27, 2010, Steve Jobs explained, live on-stage, that there was a niche to be filled.

In Apple’s mind, a charming little void was left unexplored between the laptop and smartphone. Apple had already entered both of those markets, and had put out beautiful products.

It wasn’t the first, but in its mind (and in the minds of many consumers) its products were the best. That was Apple’s M.O. – not to pioneer, but to perfect. To take a concept, polish it, and then market it to the people who can (and will) buy it, use it, and love it.

But, Apple was looking to break into far newer turf this time around.
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Personal computer. A term coined over three decades ago.

In its broadest sense, it can be used to describe nearly every computer in use today. But, when you hear the words “personal computer”, what comes to your mind? What machine do you envision?
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Following the international release of the iPad 2 it’s worth giving a thought to the continued ability of Apple to develop and market incredibly successful products. Can the iPad 2 possibly fail?

The release of the first iPad, way back in April 2010, was met by dissenting voices in the technology community. From people heralding it as a marvellous technological breakthrough, to asking serious questions over its purpose. Where does it fit in? Do people need it?

In spite of the initial qualms and speculation over the iPad, Apple was fully prepared to back its new invention and follow its well proven, tried and tested, roadmap for success. Apple would immediately get back to working on the next iteration, the purification of its new technology. (more…)

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