Safari Books Online Launches New Service

Jan 24, 2006

Safari Books Online, LLC, has launched a joint venture between technology publishers O'Reilly Media, Inc. and Pearson Technology Group, a division of Pearson plc, called Rough Cuts. The beta version of Safari's Rough Cuts service gives readers online access to works-in-progress, before they're published as print books. Readers will have the opportunity to get a sneak peak into books covering new technologies.

Readers who buy a Rough Cuts title get access to an evolving manuscript. They can read the book online or download and print a PDF version. The initial version of a Rough Cuts book will not be fully edited, subjected to final technical review, or completely formatted. Similar to the nightly build in a software project, the Rough Cuts PDF is updated every time the author and editor make changes as they progress toward the finished book. Using the Rough Cuts service's built-in Notes feature, readers can send feedback, suggestions, bug fixes, and comments directly to the author and editor.

Four O'Reilly titles are available now, and up to eight additional Rough Cuts books from both O'Reilly and Pearson Technology Group will be added in the first quarter of 2006. The inaugural Rough Cuts titles share a focus on hot emerging technologies: "Ajax Hacks", "Flickr Hacks," "Ruby on Rails: Up and Running," and "Ruby Cookbook." Among other titles coming from Pearson Technology Group this quarter are: "Macs on the Go," "Real World Adobe Creative Suite 2," "Secrets of Videoblogging," "Imagination Challenge," and "ASP.NET 2.0 Unleashed." A Rough Cuts title typically becomes available two to six months prior to a book's publication. It is updated as the author and technical reviewers progress, so users have access to new versions as they are created. Readers have three purchase options through Rough Cuts program: buy the online version, at a discount from the suggested retail price for the print book; buy both the Rough Cuts and, when it is released, the print book at a special package price; or place an advance order for just the finished book at a pre-publication discount.