Sandy Smith who blogs at Paper Palate has a thorough review of the trial issue of Taste Italia and in the process she has also produced some interesting practical comments on the digital platform.
But I was pleasantly suprised by how convenient this format is. You have an entire magazine – and with your subscription, all the back issues – laid out before you. You just click on a page to browse, expanding and collapsing pages at will. Unlike ad circulars, you don’t have to progress in a linear fashion. You can skip around, even search keywords or specific ingredients. What I especially loved about this was no clipping and filing of recipes. My recipe files are enormous and unwieldy, the somewhat distressing task of organizing them looms large. So this feature feels liberating. I know where the recipes are, they don’t take up any physical space, and I can access them if I need them.
Having said that, what then? If I want to cook the dish, I’ll have to print out the recipe. And then what? Throw it away? Filing it would only defeat the purpose of having it online….. Paper Palate
Like Sandy, we are no good at keeping the recipes that we have cut out from magazines. I never know which of several recipe books is most likely to contain that walnut cake recipe. But if, like me, you often have the laptop in the kitchen, surely the solution is to bookmark the recipes, or save the most delicious at delicious, and come back to them that way. I am not sure that Sandy realised that every page in the Exact Editions digital editions can be bookmarked. And for sure, page links can be emailed to friends. As a matter of fact I can recommend this recipe for stuffed aubergine. Whilst field testing the digital edition I followed the recipe. Scrumptious!
To adapt Shirley Conran: “Forget mushrooms, life is much better when you have stuffed an aubergine”.
Microformats!Explained a bit here:http://personanondata.blogspot.com/2008/03/yahoo-and-semantic-web.html
The Exact Editions process jumps directly from PDF to database, so would only be able to take advantage of microformats if the data format is used in the PDF. I guess this will happen as microformats and RDFs get bedded in. Developing microformats for culinary recipes strikes me as a pretty tough target. Mind you, if we have completely automated kitchens it will have happened! But I will probably still be looking for the vanilla pod.