In his Publisher's Weekly article "Betting the House on HTML5," Andrew Richard Albanese interviews Scribd chief technology officer Jared Friedman about HTML5, "the long overdue update of the Web's lingua franca, HTML"
Friedman insists the HTML makeover will "have a great impact on the future of publishing," affecting and improving the distribution, monetization and overall reading experience of digital publications.
"Until recently," he notes, books, magazines, newspapers, and other published content "never quite fit in" on the Web, and "formats are a big reason why." With HTML5, however, format problems are no longer an obstacle—today's powerful browsers can now embrace book pages as Web pages, a key development for digital reading and publishing, and a significant upgrade from the first wave of image-based digital reading solutions. "If you look at the industry giants that are behind HTML5—Apple, Google, Mozilla, Microsoft," Friedman adds, "the weight of those players suggests that we're at a don't-look-back point."
Friedman cites format problems with original HTML as one major reason the e-book market has taken so long to mature. With HTML5:
Book pages can literally become Web pages as opposed to images encased in a locked-down, artificial frame inside a browser, preserving complex designs unique to documents, books, or magazines, from fonts to images, vector graphics, rotated text, precise positioning. Maybe most importantly, HTML5 e-books are universally accessible. That means publishers get access to the largest audience possible, because HTML is an open standard, supported anywhere. If you convert your content to HTML5, almost any device can read it.