Print your own Wikipedia launched

<p>Custom-made Wikipedia encyclopaedias are to be launched in the UK as, according to Lightning Source, print on demand is &ldquo;taken to the next level&quot;. The p.o.d. firm will print the books in a partnership with Wikipedia and PediaPress, a German software company.<br /><br />Suzanne Wilson-Higgins, Lightning Source commercial director (for Europe, the Middle East and Africa) said this type of printing could be used with any database. She added:&nbsp; &quot;We&#39;ll probably start talking to text book publishers next. It&#39;s going to be a market of its own&mdash;its own niche market. We&#39;re seeing it in the travel sector&mdash;people are putting together a tailored trip which is time and location specific.&quot;<br /><br />An authoring tool on the Wikipedia website allows users to chose their own encyclopaedia content from the database choosing particular categories or subject areas they like. The book can then be previewed and ordered through PediaPress who transmit the PDF to Lightning Source to print.<br /><br />Heiko Hees, m.d. of PediaPress said: &quot;People enjoy the iTunes Store to preview, pick and mix their favourite content. They may enjoy the same for printed books too. Wikipedia is a great host of free content which naturally fits to our custom-book application.&quot;<br /><br />The service launched in the German language a fortnight ago, and will start in French, Italian, Spanish, Polish, Dutch and Portuguese this week. The English language version is due to start on 1st March. The books will be perfect bound with coloured covers and black and white text inside. They will be priced according to the number of pages used.</p>