There’s a big event this week from Apple: they’re unveiling a plan to “digitally destroy the textbook.” These development tools–a little like GarageBand for books–will allow developers to attach added-value items like problem sets with instant feedback, videos, thesauruses, dictionaries, and links to other sites. From our own experiments so far with textbooks on the iPad, I think this sounds great: I think that digital textbooks with resources like these can be incredibly useful because they go beyond what a traditional paper textbook can do and truly add value. However, just digitizing a textbook–essentially scanning the thing into an iPad–doesn’t necessarily add value at all, and it may be more of a hindrance than having a physical book.
Not a lot of word yet on exactly what this is going to look like, but keep an eye out for what’s coming next from Apple. This could be a serious game-changer. Read more here: http://www.wired.com/epicenter/2012/01/apple-digital-destroy-textbook/