Havana prints and visions
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Havana-Linkgua Manifesto 2012

All the ideas and tools described in this Manifesto have a single purpose: to energize the editing process.

A linguistic corpus

The publisher is the custodian of a digital file whose extension varies, so your documents must be designed and programmed to generate all new market formats from a single source document.

Our basic idea is to treat the Linkgua catalog as alinguistic corpus . Only the processing of thousands of titles under the same textual unification system, the same style guide and the same semantic tags can satisfy all the results we are looking for.

Linkgua is not only a publishing project in the strict sense of the word, but a database that can also be consumed in the form of books. The classical literature is perfect for this experiment, we can improve to infinity the work of unification and semantic labeling of our catalog.

The conversion must be an automatic process, so that «digitizing a catalog» means preparing it to be available in its entirety in the main formats (PDF, WebReady PDF, epub, mobi…).

The publisher’s «perfect» file

Internally, the publisher’s digital file (and its metadata) should allow you to:

  1. Automatically obtain the number of pages from the documents already edited.
  2. To be able to open documents from the digital list of titles in your catalog.
  3. Get the reviews directly from the back covers.
  4. Automatically generate covers from author, title, ISBN and logo style sheets, and calculate the spine width from the number of pages in the document.
  5. Inject tags (labels) on documents, cover images and points of sale, entering contact details, copyright information and links to other books in the catalog or relevant websites.

As mentioned above, the classic texts can be associated with critical notes provided by other editors and automatic content aggregators (organized in a glossary), so that readers can obtain a la carte editions with notes tailored to their interests. The critical apparatus of a book and its bibliography can be managed as an independent, interchangeable metadata that is updated over and over again and offered to readers as a Glossary capable of interacting with the contents. If we consider the catalog as a linguistic corpus, we can trace the expression «windmills» and assign it an overall score. That is to say, to use «footnotes» that serve for the entire catalog and that link in a transversal way the use of an expression throughout the centuries.

A mediate future

The perfect catalog for the reader should allow us to be reading a printed book and consult on our phone an incomprehensible word associated with that book.

In the case of ebooks, we could find an option to access all key terms, geographic locations to be cited below or related music, and the etc. could be very long.

The works cited in the bibliography would have links indicating where we can consult or acquire these works.

Readers could reconfigure the information about their books to suit their own interests, and those modifications could in turn interact with other books and exchange information. One social community would be interested in the music cited in a given book, and would add to the «original record» annotations in that direction, while another might be interested in the allusions to aeronautics that such a book might contain. Readers should be able to customize this content easily and quickly.

These personalized and dynamic catalogs could reorganize, personalize and interpret as «search managers» the enormous amount of information found on the Internet.

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