book references in the digital age

How do we reference locations in electronic books? Historically, it’s been easy to throw out a page number, and many people were likely to have the same edition as you or at least one with the same page layout. With digital distribution of books coming into stride, that expectation is completely off the table. So, how can we point someone to a specific reference/passage in a book?

The Bible has had this problem covered centuries, but the process also took centuries to come about. Ideally, there would be some standard for breaking up and addressing content within books. Some obvious choices are chapter:paragraph:word or chapter:paragraph:sentence. For it to really be effective though, it needs some level of consistent support within book reading software.

Is Amazon or Apple going to spearhead something like this, or with the advent of search is this a moot point?

January 30, 2012 at 8:36 am

@skoda on @technochocolate on