One giant leap for mankind

One giant leap for mankind: First, let me say it’s nice to see a Larry Dobrow by-line on a MediaPost story. That said, today he covers a development in the march toward the future of “digital versions” of magazines. I don’t have time today to link back to my earlier posts (or, better-yet, to Rafat Ali‘s, who actually “reports” on these things rather than merely rambles like me). However, I am stunned with marvel by today’s news, described as “another step toward mainstreaming the delivery of the digital versions” (which, for the uneducated, means sending out via e-mail a digitized replica of the print-version of a publication in a PDF-like document — or, rather a customized PDF, or, better yet, a “pimp my PDF,” with features that make it “more than” a mere PDF.) Anyway, the new feature announced today is, get this: The reader can now click on a word in the text of a story and it will take him or her to a URL. Wow! Can they patent this? This is a revolutionary concept that ranks way above the CueCat. Actually having words that you can click on and it takes you to another place on the Internet. What will they think of next?!

Quote (from someone I won’t embarass by naming):

“What publishers want are features that enhance the Internet-ness–to coin a phrase–of digital editions. This is one of the biggest ones.”

Here: I’ll help them by coining another phrase: “clueless-ness.” Note to the magazine world software product developers: Don’t waste your time developing features that publishers want. Develop for readers, users.