Google’s experiment in unprintable books makes for an interactive story

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Feb 05, 2016 16:29 IST
Google’s new bookstore called Editions at Play showcases the first digital e-books optimized for a smartphone or tablet complete with visuals and audio (Google)

Google just launched a new initiative called Editions at Play, primarily aimed at exploring the potential of digital books featuring animations and audio. The company calls it “an experiment in unprintable books”. Currently, there are only two books that support this feature -- Entrances and Exits by Reif Larsen and The Truth About Cats and Dogs by Sam Riviera and Joe Dunthorne.

The ebooks tell stories using digital animations as an aide, which also make them unprintable.

“Simply put, we wanted to see if we could keep the integrity of reading, but play with the book’s digital form.And yes, the idea of unprintable books is a bit hard to wrap one’s head around”, said the company in a blog post.

The two new eBooks are HTML based, so you’ll need to access the correct URL and be logged in to your Google account where you could either buy it Rs 206 or get a free sample. Reif Larsen’s Entrances and Exits packs stories inside Google Street locations which readers can explore.

The effort looks quite promising and with support from digital publishers we could see the concept materialise in the coming future. The next two books -- Strata by Tommy Lee Edwards & I Speak Machine and All This Rotting by Alan Trotter -- are expected to arrive sometime around March.

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