Adam Obeng

EPUB3 Multimedia Features, A Lighting Overview

| Categories: humanities, code

At the Digital Humanities@Oxford Summer School 2011 last week, I was invited to talk briefly about the multimedia features available in EPUB3. Not one to pass up an opportunity for public speaking, I quickly assented. The fact that the Summer School is organized in part by Oxford University Computing Services might have had something to do with it.

The fact that Sebastian ‘The Master’ Rahtz and James ‘Hwæt!’ Cummings were presenters of this session certainly did.

As part of the session on using TEI to link text and facsimilies, I talked about a possible end product of the process: a multimedia, interactive EPUB3 eBook. Of course, such an eBook can be used for much more than linking text and facscimiles. In fact, the demo book contained side-by-side manuscript and transcript, embedded video, audio narration synchronised to the text and Javascript-controlled switching between multiple versions of the text.

The book, which uses the first page of Beowulf as an used in the demonstration is available here. This is a slightly different version than that used for the demonstration, using jQuery rather than just Javascript for some interactive functions.

The slides from my presentation are available here.

I haven’t been involved in the digital humanities before, but judging from the reaction to the demonstration, a little technology can go a long way.