|When I wrote my first book, The Pacific Rim Futures and Options Markets, its appendix was extensive, taking up almost 25 percent of the book . . . and killing a few extra trees in the process! As I mention in the book’s Preface, even more problematic was the fact that the combination of a ever-changing derivative industry and rapidly changing underlying markets doomed much of the appendix to obsolescence by the time the book was in stores. That was back in 1992, before the Internet was popularized, and there wasn’t much of an alternative. But luckily, today there is, and from the start of this project in 2001, I was determined to develop a web-based complement to the book, especially given the dynamic nature of the subject matter. |
Even today, so many investment books have considerable appendices and data tables that quickly become obsolete in today’s rapidly changing world of global finance. In the hope of enhancing the ongoing relevance of the book—and saving a lot of trees—I’ve coined the concept an “E-ppendix” – or Electronic Appendix —an online accompaniment to the book that supplements the printed material and will be updated with developing news, data, tools, and research. This E-ppendix site is partnered with the broader-focused and more regularly updated IndexUniverse.com web site, which aims to be the definitive online resource for index-related topics.
The E-ppendix is also the place where my colleagues at IndexUniverse.com and I will post more detailed information on contributors to the book, updated research from those contributors, an unabridged glossary, and an unabridged bibliography (both of which can be expanded with readers’ feedback and contributions). The E-ppendix also features various “Web-Only” sidebars (linked directly to specific chapters and content in the book), data, tools (with links to the IndexUniverse.com data screener), and much more.
Other valuable features of the E-ppendix are the Discussion Boards and the Feedback tool. These enable readers of the book to interact with contributors and the editor, as well as with each other. My hope is that over time, many elements of the E-ppendix will reflect the interests and contributions of the book’s readers, eventually becoming an integral part of the book experience, and becoming a valuable stand-alone resource.
The development of this E-ppendix took substantial effort and generated considerable momentum toward related-ventures. As noted in the book’s Preface, what started as a site designed to support the book has now evolved considerably, and I’ve partnered with the Journal of Indexes and The Exchange Traded Fund Report (ETFR) to continue building IndexUniverse.com into the premiere web site for a complete range of global index-related issues. We are gratified that we’ve received enthusiastic support for the site from across the index industry — index providers, exchanges, and index fund/ETF managers. Many of the E-ppendix features are supplemented by the news, tools, and research that is available on IndexUniverse.com.
This E-ppendix will surely evolve, and the beauty of the web is that a site can grow to suit the needs of its users. And if you can’t find something that interests you, or if you can’t find answers to your indexing questions, just click on the Feedback button and my colleagues at IndexUniverse.com or I will try to be responsive to your requests. Alternatively, post your question on the Discussion Boards, and you’re sure to get an even quicker response.
Finally, I hope that this concept of an online “Electronic Appendix” has resonance for other authors and editors. I believe it is a logical and efficient way to maintain the relevance of technical/professional books, especially in the dynamic field of finance and investment. Therefore, my colleagues at IndexUniverse.com and I will be exploring ways to extend this concept to other books and their authors/editors/publishers. For more information on this opportunity, please view the E-ppendix Your Book section of this site.