I'm trying to redo the type setting for some "classic" Delphi books of mine, of which I have the original text and images (and the full copyright), like the "Delphi Developers Handbook" (published in the Delphi 3 time frame) and "Mastering Delphi 5" (or an earlier edition or a "summary" edition). The idea is to make them available primarily in PDF format, but possibly also in print. These books have a lot of content, most of which still applies to today's product, although some areas are far from complete... after 6 or 7 versions of the product. The reason this took so much time is I was trying to take the existing material and update it and improve it and rewrite it and add new examples and on and on. Considering those two books account for over 2,000 pages, that's unlikely to happen any time soon. Every time I started over the last 3 years, I never got past 50 pages...
So I've devised an alternative plan (republish the original, rather than do a new edition), with two sub-options:
a. Have the same exact content, possibly redoing the typesetting and removing the few chapters that are outdated.
b. Have the same content as above, adding a number of footnotes simply indicating changes and differences in newer versions. Very short notes, pointing out to new books or web pages where to find more info, not a detailed descriptions of the new features (which will bring me back to a new edition).
Of course plan b requires more time and effort (so it might delay the books significantly), but also adds more value to the republished books. Still, it is much, much easier than a new edition. A further option is to start with plan a and evolve it into b, giving a sort of subscription (buy a and get also b) or a huge discount for people interested in starting soon but getting also the final work. Only the latter will get to print.
While I'm busy finishing Delphi 2010 Handbook, I'm interested in figure out the next step in terms of publishing... and interested in your feedback. What would you prefer as a reader and buyer?