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July 13, 2010 / Joe Osborne

Coffee Talk: Is the New EGM Ahead of the Curve?

Welcome to Geekadelphia’s weekly discussion column, Cofffee Talk, where we talk about the finer topics concerning video games, technology and all the other things you can’t talk about with your slightly-less-geeky friends. Have questions or suggestions? Send an email to geekadelphia@gmail.com or tweet with us. Follow me on Twitter if you’d like to keep this week’s discussion alive.

What you started heard as anxious rumors and gossip is now reality. Steve Harris, the original founder of Electronic Gaming Monthly, has bought back the rights to the esteemed gaming publication and, as Big Download editor John Callaham speculates, will be returning as soon as next month (can anyone keep the nerd squeal in right now?).

However, what’s most interesting about this announcement are details surrounding EGM‘s web offering that comes with every physical subscription, EGM[i]: The Digital Magazine. Sounds cool? Learn more about it and join us in the rumor mongering — ahem, speculation — after the break!

One of the first issues of EGMever.

Harris’ claims within his pre-launch site that EGM[i]: The Digital Magazine ” is an entirely new product that literally brings content to life in ways that print magazines and websites just can’t do.” He goes on to tease his plans of “how it will interface with the iPad and the next generation of tablets.”

How can this be possible? Well, since Steve did mention the iPad, a very possible method for this revolutionary way of experiencing web media content is the EPUB format. This new web coding language allows web developers to write web pages to appear as if they were pages in a magazine — but cooler.

For example, instead of images accompanying text how about embedded videos or interactive apps/games? For you out there with awful eyeballs (me), the ability to increase the size of text on the fly and have the page format accordingly perhaps? Maybe the ability to add reference notes or bookmarks within a given page so you can return later is intriguing. These features (especially the former when it comes to ad sales) are why advertisers and publishers alike are drooling over the iPad like it’s made of bacon wrapped in more bacon.

With physical media on its way out the door (their old though, so it’ll be another 10 years before they make it through), EPUB seems like the answer to the livelihood of layout driven, high style media like magazines in a paperless future. Is it possible that Harris and EGM team have taken an entirely different route? Totally, but not likely.

Excited about the possibilities of EPUB? Still mad that you won’t be enjoying the smell of a fresh magazine in ten years time? Maybe you’re just as psyched as we are that the gaming bible of our childhood is back. Don’t be afraid to let out your nerd squeal (or rage) in the comments.

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