XML Production Workflows? Start with the Web

The Journal of Electronic Publishing Vol 13 Issue 1, 2010-03-01

Book publishers have struggled in recent years to find ways to adopt XML-based editorial and production workflows. Complexity, unfamiliarity, and uncertainty about implementation details contribute to a kind of impasse among publishers—particularly small and medium-sized firms that lack the resources to maintain innovative IT departments that might push them into 21st-century processes. While the benefits of XML-based processes are trumpeted widely, and the general business case for adopting and investing in XML and related technology has existed for 20 years, gathering the energy and resources to move into an XML-based environment has eluded many. Could it be that XML-based workflows are simply too complicated to be readily adopted by smaller publishers? And if that is so, what are the implications as we move into the digital era?