ERCIM and Keio University agreed on a joint effort to help ensure that the World Wide Web can meet the needs of the digital publishing industry. Through this collaboration, Keio University and ERCIM will support the internationalization work of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), which develops standards for Web technology, including HTML5 and Cascading Style Sheets (CSS). The expected outcome of the project will contribute to promotion and growth of the eBooks industry.
The French embassy in Japan kindly hosted the signing ceremony on 1st of November 2013 which marked the launch of this collaboration. With the digital publishing relying increasingly on Web technology for eBooks, W3C is working to ensure the Open Web Platform includes support for the layout and typography of the world’s languages. In June 2013, Keio University hosted a W3C Workshop on Internationalization for eBooks to discuss what extensions are necessary so that the Web can support vertical layout, ruby text, tone marks, and other characteristics of Asian languages. Soon after, W3C launched a new Digital Publishing Activity to build the necessary bridges between the developers of the Open Web Platform and the global publishing industry. It is thus timely for Keio University, which has a keen interest in the internationalization and distribution of digital textbooks for elementary and junior high schools (K-15), to demonstrate academic leadership in this rapidly growing field.
ERCIM and Keio University already work closely together as two of the four organizations (with MIT and Beihang University) that administer W3C. This joint effort extends the Keio/ERCIM relationship, as ERCIM has expertise that is relevant to this project. The joint effort, entitled “Further Adoption and Deployment of Internationalization with Web Technologies,” marks the first time two prestigious research institutions from non-English speaking countries agree to collaborate specifically on the internationalization of Japanese digital publishing.
W3C/ERCIM Associate Chair & Director of International Relations