The Sale of Electronic Textbooks on the Internet

The optimal format for publishing books on the Internet is PDF. The program Universal Document Converter enables authors to effectively convert their work into this format.

Nowadays, everything is sold on the Internet including various texts in electronic format. In particular, the market for educational and training materials connected with marketing, starting up blogs, financial market tips, etc is actively being developed.

At the present time there exist several factors stimulating the development of the educational materials market. The first is minimum expenses on the creation of a product, its marketing and sale. This makes it possible for any person to begin publishing who has something useful to share with others. The second factor is the ubiquitous presence of computers and the active development of the Internet. For this reason, fewer and fewer people are using printed literature and prefer texts in electronic format obtained on the Internet.

The preparation of electronic materials for sale at first glance seems an extremely simple matter: fire up a word processor, create a document, save everything, and now you can sell it. However, in reality it’s not so simple. There exist several technical points that can ruin even the most promising idea.

Formats of Electronic Educational Materials

The main technical question connected with creating electronic educational materials is the format to be used. Usually this is DOC – the “native” format of the word processor Microsoft Word. However, there are two serious disadvantages to this format. For one thing, there are problems with compatibility. At the present day, people use different versions of Microsoft Word, and a file, created with one version may open in another with garbled formatting. The second serious disadvantage of DOC is the possibility of the unsanctioned usage of information from the electronic document. People who have bought your textbook can highlight needed text passages and copy them into their own files. Thirdly, for viewing the DOC format, it is necessary to have Microsoft Word installed on the PC. This is a commercial program, and therefore, not everyone may have it.

In some situations, other formats are used to create electronic educational materials. In particular, these are HTML and sometimes CHM (the format of information and documentation systems). For this, it is not necessary to have additional software. However, even these formats are far from ideal. For example, CHM is supported only on Windows systems. In addition, both formats are completely unprotected against unsanctioned copying.

Therefore, at the present day, the optimal format for electronic educational materials is PDF. For one thing, to view them you do not need any commercial software. Secondly, this format is cross-platform which means that a PDF document when viewed and printed will always appear identical independently of which operating system is running on the computer and what software is used to open it. Thirdly, with PDF files that lack a text layer, it is impossible to simply copy text. This significantly reduces the risk of unsanctioned usage of electronic texts used for educational purposes.

Creating PDF Documents

PDF documents are creating through the process of converting files from other formats into it such as text documents, electronic charts, graphical images, etc. For solving such a task the company fCoder Group Inc. recommends using the program Universal Document Converter. This is a virtual printer that can be used by simply clicking the print button on a document in any format.

The process for creating electronic materials appears as follows. First all elements of the educational material (texts, diagrams, drawings, etc) are created in their appropriate editors. Then they are “printed” on the printer called Universal Document Converter. After this, in the indicated folder a file appears in the PDF format. It is worth noting that documents of many types can be consecutively added to the same PDF file, for example a text document, Excel table and AutoCAD drawing. In this regard, Universal Document Converter makes it possible to significantly speed up the process of creating electronic materials and renders the task simpler and more accessible.
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