Originally Posted by kovidgoyal
PDF is from the era when computers were used primarily to produce, not to consume documents. As a result it is designed with the document producer, not the consumer in mind. As such, it is unsuited to the era of digital documents.
I disagree. If people wanted "control" so badly, so they can "read" on 2" screens, they have had it for decades now. It's called plain text.
I think a lot of "techies" (I speak in general terms, not directed at anyone in particular) don't get visual presentation and design, and many never will. They hated GUI, they hate Apple, they hate Flash, etc..
But look at the Web: it has has moved from barely formated, freely reflowable text, to much more complex and "designed" look, and will move further in this direction, as the capabilities of adopted technology expand.
Similarly with e-books. Right now we are in the DOS era, but as the technology improves, design will come, the screens will get bigger, they will get color, advertising will come, complex publications like magazines will come....
People have always "consumed" information, just like other things, and once the basics are covered, design and presentation become important.
There is currently no other format other than PDF, which can meet these needs, and be somewhat "future-proof." And yeah, I wish it was open and free, but it's not, and there isn't anything open and free which can compete with it, at least for the majority of users.