When Appleannounces a special event, whether it’s a product unveiling or anything else, peoplestart talking. So when it invited select media to an “education announcement in theBig Apple” (get it?) to take place this Thursday, the rumors started flying. Wouldthis have something to do with the late Steve Jobs’desire, as described in Walter Isaacson’s biography, to revolutionize the textbookindustry the same way Apple did the music industry? Would Apple be announcing some sort ofnew education-focused iPad? Was this going tobe Jobs’ last astounding gift to the world, or something as boring as theintroduction of textbooks to the iBooks store?Though Apple is famously -- andeffectively -- secretive, it looks like some crucial details may have leaked out earlythis time. Tech website Ars Technica is reporting that a source told them that Apple plans tointroduce a new way to create e-books on Thursday, what the site is calling a“GarageBand for e-books.” Though they're simple enough to read, e-books aredifficult to publish, and an improved and easy way to create them could accelerate themarket for electronic books, especially textbooks.It’s admittedly not asglamorous as a new iPad, but the implications could be profound: If you remember spendinghundreds of dollars on heavy textbooks every semester, the idea of a cheaper, infinitelylighterweight option definitely has its charms. And who knows -- this might open up a DIYbook publishing industry the same way GarageBand has opened up the music productionprocess to millions of amateurs, for better or for worse. Continue Reading

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