WARSAW, Poland, Aug. 7, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced the start of a cooperation with Wydawnictwa Cyfrowe LLC., a leading digital services provider for educational e-textbooks, under which IBM will provide access to the e-textbooks platform: podrecznik.edu.pl on cloud infrastructure from SoftLayer, an IBM company. As a result, publishing houses will be able to easily distribute electronic versions of textbooks, so both teachers and students can have access to new forms of interactive education.
Numerous schools across Poland are switching from hard copy traditional textbooks to digital textbooks and libraries, all in order to improve collaboration between teachers and students and also enable anytime access to lesson plans from anywhere. The new generation of e-textbooks can offer far more learning opportunities than traditional platforms and multimedia publications. Thanks to the online access, parents are able to follow the progress of their children in real time. The demand for interactive, connected e-textbooks is constantly growing; however, a common platform has not been developed and different publishing houses use different standards to create digital materials. The nationwide project that Wydawnictwa Cyfrowe is working on with IBM involves providing an intuitive, interactive learning platform capable of distributing e-textbooks and educational materials from various publishers, available to all schools in the country. "Today, social networks and mobile devices generate a great challenge for publishers of traditional textbooks. The next generation approach entails providing a learning platform for students and teachers, who can work with a variety of educational materials. This requires a secure cloud computing service which we are providing with IBM ," says Marcin Strzalkowski, co-founder of Wydawnictwa Cyfrowe. "Another very important factor was scalability. The market of e-textbooks is currently growing, so the key issue was a guarantee to obtain greater capacity for increasing needs." Podrecznik.edu.pl platform enables publishing houses to convert educational materials in accordance with the standards set for e-textbook that were created by the Ministry of National Education. This means that publishers incur lower costs than if they had to develop their own digitization standards and keep teams dedicated to the task.