by Leonard Richardson on 27 Jan 01:22
Everyone else: from my experience O’Reilly is still getting used to the
@Leonard: Thanks very much. Yeah, you’re right but as they say, real change
comes from within. That said, having the non-Safari PDF pub two weeks after the print
version (down from six) may have taken some fireworks out of the release party,
but it isn’t really that long to wait–even in Rails time.
In addition to PDF releases, other progress O’Reilly made was towards a 100%
XML-based editorial and production process. Having the book constantly in
DocBook allowed me to incorporate contributed content easily and to build Ruby
tools to manipulate that content. DocBook also allowed me to easily update the
book for Rails 1.2 late in the production process.
In reality, O’Reilly gets a whole different set of problems then some of
their smaller publishing partners, like the Prags. One of those problems is how
to publish the large volume of titles they offer, with consistently high
quality. To do this they have to have more cooks in the kitchen (authors,
editors, etc…) and that makes adapting to new processes more difficult, but
definitly not impossible.
The pattern here is that our media is getting richer and PDFs are just a first step in that direction.
The future is open.