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What is ePub?

At MediaWire we know that people should have equal access to information and knowledge regardless of disability; in fact, it’s a right confirmed by the U.N. Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. That’s where ePub technology comes in.

In tech-speak but to the point; ePub is the packaged accessible interchange and delivery format for digital publications. It’s a mouthful to say but simple to execute. MediaWire is a distribution platform for ePub. It is an easy to manipulate format for representing digital publications. With it we can take in and display publications on the web, mobile web and native apps.

In more detail, ePub is an e-book file format with the extension .epub that can be downloaded and read on devices like smartphones, tablets, computers, or e-readers. It is an official technical standard published by the International Digital Publishing Forum (IDPF). The term is short for electronic publication. At this time, ePub is the most widely supported vendor-independent XML-based (as opposed to PDF) e-book format. It is now supported by the largest number of hardware readers.

ePub is a straightforward format. An ePub file (extension: .epub) is simply  a ZIP archive that contains HTML files, images, CSS style sheets, and metadata that makes the content able to be reliably processed from beginning to end by any application or device that’s compatible with its specifications.

The ePub format enables content to be created by an author or publisher only once, via different tools and services, and distributed through many channels. It can be viewed online or offline using various devices and applications.

With ePub files it is simple to have content automatically adapt to any display screen, rather than forcing the reader to pan and zoom around pre-formatted content. It does not require the use of plugins or downloads. In addition, ePub publications can contain video, audio, and interactivity – just like websites.

The Daisy Consortium is a good resource for information about all things ePub.