Unfortunately, people are convinced that the money lies in developing ever flashier shinies in order to beguile the customers, rather than in fixing fundamental problems or ensuring true cross-platform compatibility. Anyone who believes that ePub 2 address all the problems with creating static text should try creating an ePub that displays everything locked to a baseline grid (a pretty basic approach in typography for a very long time).
ePub 3 contains a lot of things that might
make it easier to produce good-looking books that are easy to navigate. But it fails to be prescriptive enough to ensure that these documents work in much the same way across all ePub 3 devices. We already have the problem with people having to tweak ePubs differently for the iPad opposed to ADE, and these differences sometimes go very deep.
The primary job of a standard is to be a standard
and the spec uses the word 'should' all too often - which means
, 'this is the way we'd like things to happen, but you can ignore it as long as you can think up an excuse'. For instance, the handling of oeb-page-head/foot has had the language "Neither should
be simply presented as if it were inline or block." for years, and it's exactly the same in ePub 3, yet ADE 1.8 still presents these elements as blocks in the same flow as the rest of the text. And they can get away with it, because that's what the standard allows.