Pressbooks Updates and are currently up and running.

Current version: Pressbooks 5.5.6

Pressbooks resources

If you’re looking for help with Pressbooks, here are some resources:

In October 2018, we retired the Pressbooks webinars. While the webinar recordings will remain available, we are working on producing a collection of short video tutorials. We expect to have all of the videos created by Spring 2019, but will be posting them as they are created. So check them out!

Stay up to date

The following updates have been highlighted as they impact user experience. For a full list of updates, see the Pressbooks Change Log and the Pressbooks Textbooks Changelog.

Interested in staying in the know on Pressbooks updates?

As always, please let us know if you have any questions or problems navigating the new features. General feedback about Pressbooks (such as bug reports, suggestions for improvement, or feature requests) can be submitted through the Pressbooks Feedback form.

Upcoming updates

There are currently no scheduled updates. Check back in the new year!

Past updates

Pressbooks 5.5.6 – November 23, 2018

This update included a number of bug fixes, specifically to the following areas:

  • Open Textbooks theme
    • improved text response to a11y increase-font-size function
  • OpenStax Import plugin
    • fixed a bug where images with spaces in their file names would be stripped out during import
    • fixed a bug re: footnotes where the note reference number would be removed during import
    • added support for importing textboxes from openstax books
  • mPDF plugin (This plugin is not relevant for users)

Pressbooks 5.5.3 – October 18, 2018

A collection of bug fixes. More information will be added

New features:

  • Attributions tool: You can now add attribution and licence information to image files in your Media Library. To make this information display publicly in all formats, check the Media Attributions setting under Theme Options. With this box checked, the information will display at the end of each chapter after your body text and before your footnotes. See the Pressbooks Userguide for more information: Media Attributions. (Thanks to Brad Payne and Alex Paredes at BCcampus for building this feature!)
  • Improved Book Cloning:
    • When cloning, all of the media files from the original book’s media will also import with the book. Previously, cloned books would only retain images. Now, videos, audio files and other media files will also come over.
    • Internal links in cloned books will now be automatically converted to point to the newly-cloned book. URLs will undergo this action as part of the cloning process, so that manual conversion isn’t necessary.
    • The source comparison tool has been improved so that readers can more easily see the differences between the original source book and a cloned book when the user has enabled source comparison on their cloned webbook. Word counts on source books will now be more accurate too.
  • Plugins: Book Administrators now have the ability to activate three different plugins inside their books: H5P, Hypothesis, and WP Quick LaTeX. For more information on these plugins and how to activate them, see the Plugins chapter in the Pressbooks Guide. (Note that this feature has been enabled since August.)
  • Cover Generator tool: In Pressbooks, you can now generate your own book cover for print and ebook formats. See the Pressbooks Userguide for more information: How to Design Your Book Cover.

Other changes:

  • Fixing the icon size on collapsible chapter subsections
  • Generating a smaller cover image for the book homepage
  • Improving the design of the navigation links on the webbook for more logical navigation through front matter and back matter
  • Improving navigation links for visual clarity and accessibility by moving the cues to the bottom of the screen
  • Additions of French, German, Spanish, and Portuguese translations for subject matter categories

Pressbooks 5.4.5 – August 10, 2018

  • Bug fixes affecting the TinyMCE table plugin, chapter titles in exports, textbook markup, colour contrast, importing part content with the Pressbooks XML file, and more.

Pressbooks 5.4.0 – July 13, 2018

  • Improved admin bar: The admin bar has been reworked to make Network Admin tools easier to find. This update only affects network administrators (super admins).
  • Updated markup for all educational textboxes: Textboxes added after this update will have headings that are default left-justified without a specific heading level assigned. However, this can all be customized via CSS or the visual editor. Textboxes added before the update will not be affected.
  • Add textboxes as sidebars: There is now an option to have any textbox appear as a sidebar.
  • Support for PDF exports via DocRaptor
  • Lightbox feature for images: Linked images in the web book can now appear in a Lightbox when selected. This feature can be turned on and off in Appearance > Theme Options > Web Options.
  • Fix: A fix for internal links in digital PDF exports that were not working properly.

Pressbooks 5.3.3 – June 22, 2018

  • Collapsible Content in the Web View: You can now create collapsible content sections in the Web View. To turn on, go to Theme Options → Web → Collapsible Content. When this is turned on, all content under H1 tags will be collapsed in the web view. This will make it easier for people to navigate and find content in long chapters.
  • Customizable Textbox Colours: You can now customize the header and background colour of textboxes in a textbook. To do this, go to Theme Options → Global → Information box.
  • Changes to Appearance of Licences: The Creative Commons API, which produced the licencing, has been replaced by a custom string. This means that the CC licences at the bottom of the textbook look a little different. Instead of a CC box, there will be icons.
  • Use Percentages to Size Tables: This is important for responsive design. This feature can be accessed by going to Table icon → Table Properties.
  • Create Table Captions in the Visual Editor: To create a table caption, select your table, click the Table icon → Table Properties and check “Caption.” Select the space directly above the centre of the table you created and type your caption.

Pressbooks 5.0.0 – March 16, 2018 (MAJOR RELEASE)

In this release, most of the improvements are under the hood. However, there are a few big changes we would like to call to your attention.

  • A new look and feel is available for the network home page and catalog: The new standalone catalog page is sortable and filterable, for improved discovery.
  • Webbook makeover, with some added functionality: A wider book layout, better scrolling and navigation are just some of the enhancements. We have also updated the Open Textbook theme at BCcampus. A big thanks to Ryerson University for supporting the development of these changes.
  • New themes: The Luther theme retired. In its place, Pressbooks released two new themes: McLuhan and Jacobs. These two themes both offer expanded theme options, and both are designed with textbooks in mind. Their development has been generously funded by eCampus Ontario. We will be continuing to use the Open Textbooks as our default theme and the theme for the BCcampus open textbook collection.

Other changes include:

  • Save Button: Pressbooks heard your pleas for a clearer way to save your chapters. It’s here! (In the past, the “save” button was named Update, Publish, or other variations based on the status of your post.) Note that when you create a new chapter, front or back matter section, you will first see a “Create” button, but subsequent changes can be saved by clicking on the new “Save” button.
  • Contributor Management: Pressbooks added a centralized contributor management tool where you can add contributors who can then be reused throughout your book as authors, editors, translators, reviewers, illustrators, and generic contributors.
  • Organize Page Improvements: Pressbooks revamped the Organize page, improving the display on mobile devices, and improving accessibility for keyboard navigation and screen reader users.
  • Chapter Importing: Now, you can import individual chapters from public, openly-licensed Pressbooks webbooks using the Import tool. All you need to drop is drop in the URL to a book, begin the import process, then select the chapters you wish to add to your book. (Content that is private, All Rights Reserved or that carries any of the Creative Commons Non-Derivative licenses cannot be imported.)
  • Content Visibility: Pressbooks has made it more intuitive to manage the visibility of your content across web and exports. Now you can simply designate content visibility in web and exports on both the Organize page and the edit screen for individual front matter, chapters and back matter.
  • Import Files from URL: You can now import supported file formats hosted on remote (web based) sources via URL. If you have files hosted elsewhere (with the right permissions), you no longer need to download and upload files, but can import them directly with just the URL.
  • Ebook Start Point: Pressbooks has moved the ebook start point setting to the ebook Theme Options page to ensure that only one front matter, chapter, or back matter can be set as the ebook start point. (Note that Pressbooks tries to enforce the ebook start point you select. However, ereader devices may still override the start point you designate.)
  • Language Support Changes: Pressbooks has renamed the Language Support section in Theme Options to Language & Script Support to better reflect its functionality; we’ve also re-labelled Hindi support to Devanagari, to clarify that the Devanagari script supports Hindi, Sanskrit, and over 120 other languages.

Want to see how it looks?

Our team put together a screencast of the new interface and the changes in the March 16 release.

Pressbooks 4.1 – Summer 2017

  • LaTeX: LaTeX outputs are now at a sufficient resolution for print applications.
  • Restore deleted content: Accidentally delete a chapter or part? You have one day to restore it from the Trash folder. (Organize > Trash)
  • Clone a Pressbook: Clone any public, properly-licensed book from any Pressbooks network, including your own! (super admins can clone any book from their own network, regardless of license)
  • Delete a Pressbook: Users can now delete their own books from the book menu.
  • Book word count: Word count for the entire book and for content marked for export is now displayed on the Organize page.
  • Gurmukhi (Punjabi): This provides font support for Gurmukhi script.
  • Book Information page: Expanded metadata is now hidden on the Book Information page unless needed.
  • Customize your book with CSS: Book editors can now modify theme options and custom CSS

Pressbooks 3.9.8 – May 18, 2017

  • Canadian Indigenous syllabics: This provides font support for the following languages: Chipewyan, Inuktitut, Plains Cree, Cree, Moose Cree, Slave, Northern Cree, Naskapi, Swampy Cree, Southern East Cree, and Ojibwa.
  • Paragraph separation in web books
  • Importing Word Documents: A number of enhancements to improve the import process with Word Documents. This includes properly importing bold, italic, superscript, and subscript text.
  • Importing Pressbooks WXR files: A number of bug fixes relating to importing Pressbooks XML files.